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Search warrant issued for Alec Baldwin's phone amid "Rust" investigation

Alec Baldwin says he "didn't pull the trigger"
Alec Baldwin says he "didn't pull the trigger... 01:50

A New Mexico judge signed a search warrant on Thursday, authorizing officials to comb through actor Alec Baldwin's phone. The warrant comes as local officials continue their investigation into the fatal shooting on the "Rust" film set on October 21.

Authorities believe Baldwin used his iPhone to discuss the "Rust" production in the months prior to the shooting and want to search it "for any evidence relating to the death investigation of Halyna Hutchins," the search warrant said. 

According to the warrant, authorities also searched Hutchins' phone and found conversations about the film's production dating back to July 2021. They also found photos of receipts from businesses in the Santa Fe area — near the film's set — from September.

alec-baldwin-shooting.jpg
A distraught Alec Baldwin lingers in the parking lot outside the Santa Fe County Sheriff's offices on Camino Justicia after being questioned on October 20, 2021, about a shooting when a prop gun misfired earlier in the day on a local movie set. Jim Weber/The New Mexican

Authorities will download nearly all of the data on Baldwin's iPhone, including photos, text messages, social network private messages, contacts, recent call history, GPS data and other files.

However, the warrant clearly states that any information that is obtained by authorities and deemed irrelevant to the investigation will be "sealed and later destroyed as soon as feasible."

No one has been charged in the shooting that killed Hutchins, the film's cinematographer, and injured director Joel Souza.

Earlier this month in his first interview since the incident, Baldwin said that although the incident remains under investigation, it is "overwhelmingly likely that it was an accident" and that he will not be charged.

Alec Baldwin speaks about shooting victim 01:59

In the wake of the shooting, crew members have alleged that producers skimped on safety procedures to save money, and two have filed civil lawsuits. Baldwin said in last month's interview he was not aware of any complaints regarding safety on set.

Baldwin said both armorer Hannah Gutierrez-Reed and first assistant director David Halls — two people who he said he trusted to do the job — had handled the guns, although Gutierrez-Reed was in charge of them most of the time. Baldwin maintained that it was not his responsibility to ensure that the guns were safe.

"In terms of the handling of the gun, that day I did exactly what I've done every day on that movie," Baldwin said. "The actor's responsibility is to do what the prop armorer tells them to do."

"Someone is responsible for what happened and I can't say who that is, but I know it's not me," he said.

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