Actor Alec Baldwin was just charged with involuntary manslaughter for the shooting death on the set of the film Rust. Also charged is the films armorer, Hannah Gutierrez-Reed. A New Mexico judge found there was sufficient evidence to file the criminal charges. It’s unclear as of now what kind of sentencing the two would face if found guilty. Involuntary manslaughter is defined as an unintentional killing that results either from recklessness or criminal negligence or from the commission of a low-level criminal act such as a misdemeanor. Good to know. The Judge made the right call. From what we can gather about the case, it’s the criminal negligence part that is key. It’s a film set and there are protocols in place when it comes to weapons. As basic as it sounds you must make sure there isn’t live ammo in the weapon. That’s the armorer’s job and also the actor who’s holding the weapon in the scene. It’s hard to get past that part. After working on Hollywood sets where guns were used and blanks were fired, I have witnessed the abundance of caution that is used. And even with ‘Blanks’ things can go horribly wrong. In my opinion it sounds as if things were moving at a quick pace on the set of Rust. Budgets were an issue. The Armorer may have been in over her head and moving too fast. However once that weapon is placed in Baldwins hands he also bears responsibility. Everything about this case is tragic. Is it ironic that Baldwin is so very vocal about guns and gun violence? Yes. Will any of this bring the victim back to life? No. Let’s hope these charges serve the purpose of maintaining weapons safety on film sets. Let the finger wagging commence on social media. All the pundits will be running for the so-called ‘high ground’, but as cliche as it may sound, this whole lesson is about avoiding tragedy. That’s all.