Last week, New Mexico authorities investigating the shooting death of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins on the set of the film “Rust” issued a warrant for star Alec Baldwin’s cell phone. Seemingly in response to a spate of negative media coverage resulting from this news, Baldwin posted a rambling video to Instagram Saturday in which he insisted he is cooperating with authorities.
“Any suggestion that I am not complying with requests or orders or demands or search warrants about my phone, that’s bulls***, that’s a lie,” the actor said in the nearly 5-minute video he recorded in his car and then posted to the social media platform.
Baldwin then claimed his delay in turning over his phone is the result of bureaucratic red tape, saying, “This is a process where one state makes the request of another state. Someone from another state can’t come to you and say, ‘Give me your phone. Give me this, give me that.’ They can’t do that. They have to go through the state you live in. That is a process that takes time, they have to specify what exactly they want. They can’t just go through your phone and take your photos or your love letters to your wife, or what have you.”
He added, “We are one thousand percent going to comply with all that. We’re perfectly fine with that.”
Baldwin then directly criticized the New York Post, which published a story Friday that included expert opinion that Baldwin’s reluctance to turn over his phone could indicate that it contains potentially incriminating evidence.
The Post reported that investigators believe Baldwin’s phone contains key information, but that he has so far failed to relinquish it, despite authorities issuing a warrant for the device.
The story went on:
“There could be incriminating evidence on the phone, or it might be for privacy reasons,” said Kevin Kearon, a former Nassau District Attorney’s Office who’s now a criminal defense lawyer.
“If he deleted text messages or call records then he would face the possibility of criminal contempt,” said Kearon, who works at the Long Island firm Barket Epstein Kearon. “Or if there are personal messages, for example, between he and his wife, it’s not shocking that he wouldn’t want them in the public domain …”
Kearon said the move flies in the face of the actor’s previous vow to fully cooperate with police.
“It’s not consistent with his pledge early on to cooperate with law enforcement,” he said. “It certainly looks suspicious to the average person.”
In response to the Post’s reporting, Baldwin said, “Consider the source … Sidney Poitier, one of the icons of the business, one of the kings of movie royalty dies, and on the cover of the Post they have other lies and bulls*** and nonsense,” he fumed.
Baldwin finished, “It’s all going to work out, regardless of what they say in these right-wing rag sheets, and people who are all about hate.”