‘That ’70s Show’ Star Masterson Receives 30-Year to Life Prison Sentence for Raping Two Women

'That '70s Show' Star Masterson Receives 30-Year to Life Prison Sentence for Raping Two Women

Former “That ’70s Show” star Danny Masterson, a prominent figure in the world of entertainment and Scientology, has been sentenced to 30 years to life in prison for the rape of two women. The shocking revelations that emerged during the sentencing indicate that the Church of Scientology allegedly played a role in protecting Masterson and intimidating his accusers into silence.

Masterson, 47, known for his role in the retro TV comedy for eight seasons, was convicted in May after a second trial. The jury was unable to reach a verdict on a charge related to the rape of a third woman. Judge Charlaine Olmedo of Los Angeles Superior Court imposed the harshest sentence allowable by law. Masterson, who has been in jail since his conviction, may be eligible for parole in 25-1/2 years.

The case garnered significant attention due to the connection between Masterson and the women he was accused of assaulting, which was through their involvement with the Church of Scientology. The accusers claimed that the organization actively discouraged them from reporting the crimes to law enforcement.

The Church of Scientology vehemently denied these allegations, asserting that Masterson’s religious affiliation should not have played a role in the case and labeling it as “an unprecedented violation of the First Amendment.”

Prosecutors in the case centered their arguments around Scientology, asserting that the organization utilized “fabrications about the Church to introduce prejudice and inflame bigotry.”

The two women who came forward with their harrowing experiences accused Masterson of drugging and sexually assaulting them in separate incidents between 2001 and 2003 at his Hollywood Hills residence.

During the sentencing, as Masterson sat stoically alongside his wife, actor Bijou Phillips, and his brother, “Malcolm in the Middle” actor Christopher Masterson, the two victims delivered emotional victim impact statements. While Masterson had the opportunity to address the court, he chose not to speak.

One victim, identified as Jane Doe 2 in the case, offered forgiveness, saying, “I forgive you. Your sickness is no longer mine to bear.” She described the Church of Scientology as an “enabler and protector” for Masterson and claimed that she was “terrorized and harassed” by the organization when she attempted to speak out about her ordeal. The trauma from the rape led to her developing PTSD, causing her once-promising acting career to wither.

The second victim, identified as Jane Doe 1, revealed that her mother was a Scientologist who disowned her after she criticized the group during the trial. “I didn’t choose to be born in Scientology just like I didn’t choose to be raped,” she expressed, accusing the organization of attempting to silence and intimidate her throughout the legal proceedings. Leah Remini, a former Scientologist and outspoken critic of the organization, stood by her side in court.

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Both victims implored the judge to hand down a life sentence to Masterson, emphasizing the profound negative impact his actions had on their lives.

Deputy District Attorney Reinhold Mueller, after the sentencing, praised the resilience of the victims, saying, “The victims were strong, they were committed to making sure that justice gets served, and today they got it.”

In response to the sentencing, defense attorney Shawn Holley announced that Masterson intends to appeal, citing what she described as substantial errors in the case.

The allegations against Masterson had a detrimental impact on his career. Following the initial accusations of sexual assault in 2017, he was dismissed from the Netflix series “The Ranch,” marking a significant downturn in his professional life.

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