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Filmmakers Charged With Involuntary Manslaughter In Gregg Allman Biopic Death

David McNew, Getty Images

A trio of filmmakers have been charged with involuntary manslaughter in the February 20 death on the set of a troubled Gregg Allman biopic. Randall Miller, Jody Savin and Jay Sedrish are also facing criminal trespassing charges after 27-year old camera assistant Sarah Jones was killed.

According to Variety, a Wayne County, Georgia grand jury has returned an indictment on the producers. The manslaughter charge carries up to a 10-year sentence in Georgia, with a maximum sentence of one year in prison for misdemeanor trespassing.

The deadly incident unfolded on a trestle over the Altahama River in rural Georgia, as the crew shot a dream sequence in which Allman sees his dead brother Duane Allman on a bridge. A train unexpectedly arrived, leaving the assembled group only moments to escape along a narrow service gangway. Jones died, and seven others were injured, in the aftermath. Investigators say Miller began production without a permit.

Allman himself later asked that production of the film, based on his own memoir and titled ‘Midnight Rider,’ be halted. He also filed, and then withdrew, a lawsuit against Unclaimed Freight Productions Inc. An injured makeup artist is also going to court. William Hurt, set to star as Allman, quit. Protests and a candlelight vigil followed, as well.

Miller is the director of the film and, with his wife Savin, owner of Unclaimed Freight. Sedrish is the project’s executive producer. All three are likewise being sued by Jones’ family. Also named in that suit are Gregg Allman, ‘Midnight Rider’ distributor Open Road Films and the companies which own the railroad tracks and adjacent property.

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