‘That ’70s Show’ Star Danny Masterson Charged With 3 Counts Of Rape
That ‘70s Show star Danny Masterson has been charged with three accounts of rape by force or fear of three women in his Hollywood Hills home between 2001 and 2003. This time frame was during the height of Masterson’s career playing the character Steven Hyde on the television series, but a warrant for his arrest was not filed until Tuesday.
Masterson was arrested on Wednesday morning, but was released later that day after posting bail. He is set to be arraigned on September 18. Prosecutors have alleged that Masterson raped a 23 year-old woman between January and December of 2001, a 28 year-old woman in the April of 2003 and a 23 year-old woman between October and December of 2003. All three women were allegedly raped inside his Hollywood Hills home.
The three women’s names were not made public, but in a joint statement made they claimed that they have endured “harassment, embarrassment and re-victimization,” since the investigation.
The women stated, “We are thankful that the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office is finally seeking criminal justice against Masterson. We are confident that the truth will be known and hope that the charges filed today are the first steps in this long journey of healing, justice, and holding those that victimized us accountable.”
Masterson’s attorney Tom Mesereau is sticking by Masteron and claims that his client is innocent. Mesereau, who is known for representing Michael Jackson and Bill Cosby during their sex-related trials, said in a statement, “Obviously, Mr. Masterson and his wife are in complete shock considering that these nearly 20-year old allegations are suddenly resulting in charges being filed, but they and their family are comforted knowing that ultimately the truth will come out. The people who know Mr. Masterson know his character and know the allegations to be false.”
Masterson has been married to his wife, actor Bijou Philips, for almost 10 years.
If Masterson is found guilty on the three counts of rape he could be sentenced to 45 years to life in state prison. Police were also investigating two other charges against Masterson, but authorities could not charge him due to insufficient evidence and the expiration fo the statute of limitations.
Masterson starred in That ‘70s Show with actors Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis and Topher Grace. It aired on Fox from 1998 to 2006. Masterson and Kutcher both starred on The Ranch on Netflix in 2016, however he soon left the show after rape allegations were made in 2017.