The assistant director of Rust, who allegedly handed the prop gun to Alec Baldwin that killed Halyna Hutchins, has previous record of allowing unsafe working conditions on the set of other productions, according to a former colleague. Complaints against Dave Halls were made by prop maker and pyrotechnician Maggie Goll, who worked with him on 'Into the Dark' on Hulu in 2019.
Halls reportedly never addressed weapon safety protocols during meetings and would allow using prop guns without even checking them, according to Goll. Last week, a similar mistake cost the life of Rust's cinematographer Hutchins, with Halls being held responsible among others.
Reckless and Unprofessional
Goll, who worked with Halls on 'Into the Dark' that was aired on Hulu in 2019, told CNN in a statement that he would never address weapon safety protocols during production meetings. Goll also said that she was told to "watch out" for him by another crew member as Halls apparently tried to get touchy with them.
Goll, a special effects technician and pyrotechnician on 'Into the Dark', said, "He did not make a safe working environment. Sets were almost always allowed to become extremely claustrophobic, no established fare lanes, exits blocked... safety meetings were nonexistent."
On one instance, Goll recalled how Halls continued with the shooting despite the lead pyrotechnician required medical emergency and the sat became unsafe for work. She also claimed that Halls neglected to hold safety meetings or inform the crew ahead of time that there was a firearm on the set.
Halls' attitude and approach toward his work may have cost the life of Hutchins after he was identified as the crew member who handed Baldwin, 63, the loaded gun that killed cinematographer Hutchins, 42, according to court documents.
Arrogance at Its Height
Not holding meeting to follow standard weapon safety protocols is Halls way of doing work, according to Golls. He didn't check the gun himself after the head armorer of Rust Hannah Gutierrez-Reed told him it was safe for use and handed it to Baldwin who fired the shot at Hutchins killing her instantly.
The weapon safety protocol meetings stipulate that any weapon being used on a set - real or fake - must be 'introduced' to the cast and the crew so that they are aware of its presence, and can follow other safety protocols.
"The only reason the crew was made aware of a weapon's presence was because the assistant prop master demanded Dave acknowledge and announce the situation each day," Goll said in the statement to CNN about working with Halls on 'Into the Dark'.
She also added that the prop master would reprimand Halls for not acknowledging the protocol. "There is absolutely no reason that gun safety should be ignored on set, even when it is a non-firing prop firearm," Goll told NBC News.
Halls had reportedly shouted that the weapon was a "cold gun" â meaning that it was safe to use â after grabbing it from Gutierrez-Reed and before giving it to Baldwin, according to a search warrant issued on Friday.