Revolver Baldwin Was Holding Could Not Be Fired Without Trigger Pull, Says FBI Report

The best way to make a bad situation worse is to lie about what happened.  Because more often than not, the truth comes out, and when it does, the offending party is not only responsible for the original misdeed but is now broadly viewed as a liar, to boot.  

The cover-up, as they say, is always worse than the crime.   

It appears Alec Baldwin is learning this lesson firsthand, as this week, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) concluded that the gun the 64-year-old actor was holding on the set of the movie “Rust” could “not be made to fire without a pull of the trigger,” as NPR reported.

This new development directly contradicts Baldwin’s assertion that he did not pull the trigger of the single-action .45 Colt replica that discharged the live round that fatally wounded cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on Oct. 21, 2021, at the Bonanza Creek Ranch in Bonanza City, New Mexico.

As Baldwin told ABC News in December, “Well, the trigger wasn’t pulled. I didn’t pull the trigger.” 

In light of the FBI’s ballistic report, Baldwin still hasn’t changed his story. 

On Monday, in an interview with Chris Cuomo, Baldwin doubled down on the notion that he was not responsible.  

“I know that every single person on the set of the film knows what happened, and the people who are talking loudest about what happened or speculating about what happened were not on the set of the film,” Baldwin told Cuomo, who was fired from CNN last year and now hosts the Chris Cuomo Project

SEE ALSO: Alec Baldwin Tries to Avoid Blame (Again) in New Court Filing

“Everybody who was there, they know exactly what happened,” Baldwin added. “They know exactly who’s to blame.”

Baldwin has not yet been charged with a crime.

But Bradford Cohen, a criminal lawyer and licensed firearms instructor, told Newsweek that the FBI’s findings “screams consciousness of guilt” and indicated that an indictment is long overdue.

“Common gun safety in any circumstance, let alone pointing a firearm and pulling the trigger, is to check the firearm,” Cohen said.

“Actors don’t suddenly become less responsible because they are actors. If this was a rap video, charges would have already been filed,” he added.

Though Baldwin has avoided any criminal liability thus far, he has been named in at least three lawsuits, including one filed on behalf of Mrs. Hutchins’ family that accuses Baldwin and the other producers of the movie of “reckless behavior and cost-cutting” that created unsafe working conditions.

SEE ALSO: Police Release New Video Evidence in Baldwin Shooting Debacle

Luke Nikas, the attorney representing Baldwin, has maintained that his client was told by the person responsible for safety on the set that the gun was “cold.”

Nikas also said in a statement that the FBI report is being “misconstrued.”

“The gun fired in testing only one time—without having to pull the trigger—when the hammer was pulled back and the gun broke in two different places,” alleged Nikas. “The FBI was unable to fire the gun in any prior test, even when pulling the trigger, because it was in such poor condition.”

The investigation is still ongoing. Once it’s completed, the case will be handed over to the district attorney’s office for review to see if any charges should be filed against Mr. Baldwin, per NPR.

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About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 19 comments… add one }
  • Hondo August 22, 2022, 7:35 am

    That’s a tough call, who is more believable the fbi or Baldwin ? Neither deserve our trust.

  • BR549 August 19, 2022, 10:07 pm

    Atty Luke Nikas, you NEVER EVER put your finger on the trigger unless you plan to shoot whatever the barrel is pointing at, ……… EVER.

    This is standard material for anyone wanting to handle guns safely. Your client, the arrogant dumbf-ck liberal that he is, thought that rules were for other people because he considers himself to be a famous elite “A-List actor”. Rules are for the common people.

    Consider the case of why the California Highway Patrol, 50 years ago, wondered why motorists kept inadvertently driving their cars into motorcycle patrolmen. It seems the motorists were so interested in how cool the bike looked that they drove closer and closer see up close until their curiosity got the better of any safety discipline. My guess is that something similar goes on with guns and that when one allows their mind to wander and not be focused on the task at hand, muscle memory will sometimes take over and finish the sequence that grasping the pistol grip had started.

    Bottom line here: Liberals don’t need to follow rules because they already know everything. “It’s hard to fill a cup which is already full.”.

  • Stevo Reno August 19, 2022, 12:46 pm

    All this grief and furor could have easily been avoided had Mr. Virtue Signaling Baldwin taken the free NRA safety video on how to check and clear handguns. By the way, Mr. Baldwin, this procedure should be practiced every time one picks up any firearm.

  • Jerry August 19, 2022, 9:42 am

    So, the fbi found the gun to be “in such poor condition”, goes with my own observations of prop gun maintnance; Harried Hannah reported having to clean out a chamber for what she thought was a dummy round. Since hollywood classically uses “5-in-one” blanks, these are used in 38-40 pistols and rifles, 44-40 pistols and rifles, and 45 Colt’s pistols, the expended blackpowder residue can build up such that a live 45 will not fit in the space taken up by the 38-40 dimensioned 5/1 blank. I half-empathise with not paying overly much attention to the visual discrepancy of 38-40 vs 45 Colt’s, since the45 is preferred for visual accuracy/continuity in closeups, and are commonly loaded and reloaded and re-reloaded as blanks. The only prop guns i have observed that were clean, were Bob Munden’s, and i have a side story i can tell about that arrogant showoff. But he was fast!

  • Jerry August 19, 2022, 9:22 am

    Apparently, after hearing numerous (sorry; “multiple”) news reporters, it seems that the fbi hit the hammer with a hammer, which broke the tip off the trigger, and also the hammer sear. I speculate this was not a transferbar type, unless they held the triggger back, too. As per the april video, the highly self-esteemed and much vaunted play-actor HAD HIS FINGER IN THE TRIGGERGUARD, AND PULLED THE TRIGGER! Valid video evidence, highly useful in court, showing casual (contemptual) disregard for safety protocol. Dident even try to ease the hammer down, simoly pulled the trigger. Something prevented them from filming longer with that unit (cellphone?) since the next round in the cylinder seems to have been the fatal “live” round.

  • D.J. August 19, 2022, 8:42 am

    Had it been me , instead of a millionaire actor , they
    would have locked me up so deep , I would have had
    to be fed with a slingshot .

  • Anthony J Romano August 19, 2022, 8:30 am

    It took them this long to discover that a single action revolver needs to have the trigger pulled to fire! WOW!

  • Gary L Moore August 17, 2022, 9:01 am

    Take no responsibility for pulling the trigger of the gun you are holding. instead blame others.
    What a nice guy..

  • Mark N. August 17, 2022, 1:54 am

    “The gun fired in testing only one time—without having to pull the trigger—when the hammer was pulled back and the gun broke in two different places,” alleged Nikas. “The FBI was unable to fire the gun in any prior test, even when pulling the trigger, because it was in such poor condition.”

    I own three Piettas and one Uberti 1873, and I gotta call BS on this claim. The cylinder wasn’t going to break, which leaves the cam lock, the trigger, the hammer and the hand/hand spring. If the trigger was broken, the poor darling would just hand there like a dead fish, which would of course be quite noticeable Still, possible but unlikely. AND THE FBI WOULD HAVE FOUND A BROKEN PART! If the hammer was broken, it couldn’t be cocked. Hands don’t break, only hand springs, but that doesn’t keep the gun from firing, only keeping the cylinder from advancing. The cam only effects the timing. So what exactly broke that allowed the gun to fire?

  • Blue Dog (he/him) 🧢 August 16, 2022, 8:43 pm

    How much of a Colt copy was it? Did the weapon in question have a transfer bar?

    • Kane August 19, 2022, 8:11 am

      Are you speculating whether his thumb slipped of the hammer? Would such a mistake require the trigger to be pulled?

      • Blue Dog (he/him) 🧢 August 19, 2022, 10:56 am

        I am wondering what could have gone wrong. Trigger pull or no, everyone agrees the gun was in Baldwin’s hand when it went off and ultimately he is responsible for where it was pointing, where the bullet went and the damage it inflicted until it came to a stop, which tragically killed a lady and wounded (one? two was it?) more people.

        As much as I love my antiques and their faithful reproductions, the transfer bar is an added layer of mechanical safety. If something went wrong in the mechanism, if the cocked hammer did fall without a trigger pull, a transfer bar could potentially prevent the gun from firing. A more faithful Peacemaker clone with a firing pin directly on the hammer is more likely to discharge in case of such mechanical failure, without the trigger being depressed. A transfer bar (like a Ruger made after 1973) would either require the trigger being pulled, which would indicate proper function and not a mechanical failure, or a more complex and thorough failure on the part of the weapon. Potentially, this could be the difference between manslaughter and second degree murder?

        The gun was in his hand when it went off. Everything else is just details; and I think this could be an important one.

      • Blue Dog (he/him) 🧢 August 19, 2022, 11:10 am

        The whole point of the transfer bar system was because of you dropped a single action on its hammer, it could potentially discharge. The firing pin on the hammer rested close to the primer of the cartridge in the cylinder under the hammer, which is why it was common practice to keep the hammer on an empty cylinder. JB Books had a conversation with Gillem about this in the Shootist. A transfer bar, on the other hand, rests between the hammer and a firing pin captured in the frame. When the trigger is pulled, the transfer bar raises to transfer the forward motion of the hammer to the pin in the frame, which then strikes the primer. If the trigger is released before the hammer strikes the transfer bar, the firing pin never gets pushed forward to ignite the round. If the hammer falls without the pulling the trigger, (barring mechanical failure) the transfer bar never raises and the weapon does not fire.

        To wit, this transfer bar system also appears in NEF and H&R Handi-Rifles. Some single actions have transfer bars, some don’t. Ruger introduced transfer bars on their single actions in 1973 and there is an outstanding recall on any Ruger single action (I think this includes both Blackhawk and Vaqueros? Someone may correct me on this point) to put a transfer bar in. It is a safer, more robust system but some folks hate transfer bars in the same way some people hate the onboard locks on Smith & Wesson revolvers.

        • Kane August 19, 2022, 10:11 pm

          Is was almost certainly a series of mistakes made by people who should NOT be around firearms. The first mistake was made when the pistol was loaded and never made safe. Maybe, this was similiar to the killing of Brandon Lee or maybe someone knew that these novices would have a negligent discharge and set up the film crew. There were low budget targets that Baldwin was aware of and he has to own that blunder also.

          And of course Baldwin was the final safety valve that failed. I feel bad for him even though he is a jerk. More importantly I feel bad for the many other victims. Baldwin made some pretty harsh comments on PO’s that were in trouble for shooting people in the line of duty, now he faces the courts.

          One thing is for sure, people like Baldwin should stop using prop Churches to spread his hatred for Christianity.

    • Anthony J Romano August 19, 2022, 8:29 am

      It doesn’t matter if it had a transfer bar or not. They still work the same. Pull the hammer all the way back then pull the trigger and BAM!

    • sr August 19, 2022, 11:04 am

      Pietta SAA models are near-exact copies. The transfer bar (not present if it follows early Colt design) only protects against accidents such as dropping on a hard floor. Baldwin did not do that. He DID pull the trigger and is lying which is what his lawyer would advise anyway. He sure doesn’t want to admit anything so stupid.

      • Blue Dog (he/him) 🧢 August 19, 2022, 1:31 pm

        (not present if it follows early Colt design)

        THAT’S MY QUESTION! I have seen Italian copies that had transfer bars! Didn’t the Beretta Stampede have a transfer bar?

        • srsquidizen August 19, 2022, 5:15 pm

          Most revolvers have them these days including the many Colt replica “cowboy” style. Without a transfer bar to positively block hammer except when trigger is pulled, you should keep 1 empty chamber rotated to position in front of the hammer. That’s a nuisance to make sure of all the time, so the transfer bar is a desirable safety feature except to “purists” who want everything just like 1873. It’s something they didn’t worry about too much way back in those days. Other things were a lot more dangerous.

  • survivor50 August 16, 2022, 8:20 pm

    ” Revolver Baldwin Was Holding Could Not Be Fired Without Trigger Pull, Says FBI Report !!! ”

    THE FBI ??? … I am Shocked !!!

    Who KNEW ???

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