Donald Trump has baselessly suggested actor Alex Baldwin may have deliberately shot two colleagues in a movie set accident which left one dead and one injured.
Baldwin fatally shot cinematographer Halyana Hutchins and wounded director Joel Souza on the set of Rust on October 21, after assistant director David Halls allegedly handed him a prop gun which turned out to be loaded.
“He’s a troubled guy,” said Mr Trump during a radio interview. “There’s something wrong with him. I’ve watched him for years. He gets into fistfights with reporters. Look, I don’t like reporters. I like some, some are great, some are talented, but you don’t get into fistfights. I mean, everything he does, he’s a volatile guy. He’s a nutjob.”
Mr Trump added that he would not have pointed a weapon at someone in that situation.
“If they handed me a gun, I would never point it at somebody and shoot it, you know,” Mr Trump said. “I don’t care about checking the gun, you know, you can look at [it] any which way […] It’s not even like an actress that’s on set with you, this was a cinematographer, so that means he took the gun and pointed it at a cinematographer, pulled the trigger and she was dead. It’s weird.”
He continued: “I think just by natural [instinct]… I think I would have pointed it up in the air, but you can also look to see if it’s loaded. But who would take a gun and point it at a cinematographer and pull the trigger, and she’s dead.”
Officials have been investigating how live ammunition ended up in the gun, but Mr Trump suggested that Mr Baldwin himself might have loaded it.
“Maybe he loaded it,” Mr Trump said. “There’s something wrong with him, he’s a sick guy.”
The former president then criticised Mr Baldwin’s performances during Saturday Night Live.
“Alec Baldwin was terrible at imitating me, I thought. I thought he was really terrible and by the way, if I thought he was good and I didn’t like his politics or I didn’t like him, I would have said he was good. But he was terrible, but they had him on for years doing this stuff. But I don’t like him or dislike him, I don’t actually know him, but I’ve watched him over the years because of the fact that he did this so much on Saturday Night Live” he said.
“I’ve watched him, and he’s a cuckoo bird, he’s a nutjob.” Mr Trump added.
The former president has often questioned the mental stability of his critics or political opponents. He called former FBI chief James Comey “crazy, a real nutjob” in a meeting with the Russian foreign minister at the White House; said Senator Lindsey Graham “went crazy – the guy is a nutjob” in 2016; referred to Senator Bernie Sanders as “crazy Bernie” and called him a “total nutjob”; and referred to Kim Jong-un, the North Korean dictator, as “a madman … he could be a total nutjob frankly”, before the two leaders met and developed a close relationship.
He has also referred to former aide Omorosa Manigault Newman as “wacky and deranged”, and said Democratic congresswoman Maxine Walters was “crazy”.
Some have suggested that Mr Trump himself may have mental health issues, including his niece Mary Trump, a clinical psychologist, who says he shows signs of being a narcissist.