‘That 70s Show’ Actor Danny Masterson Sentenced To 30 Years To Life On Two Counts Of Rape

Danny Masterson, famously known for his role as Steven Hyde in “That ’70s Show,” was sentenced to 30 years to life in prison on Thursday after a Los Angeles jury found him guilty of raping two women at his Hollywood Hills home in the early 2000s.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Charlaine F. Olmedo handed the sentence to the 47-year-old actor after he reportedly listened to statements from the women he was convicted of sexually assaulting in 2003.

“Mr. Masterson, I know that you’re sitting here steadfast in your claims of innocence, and thus no doubt feeling victimized by a justice system that has failed you,” Olmedo told Masterson before handing down the sentence, according to The Associated Press. “But Mr. Masterson, you are not the victim here. Your actions 20 years ago took away another person’s voice, and choice. One way or another you will have to come to terms with your prior actions, and their consequences.”

A Los Angeles jury found Masterson guilty of two counts of rape in a retrial in May after several women he met through the Church of Scientology accused him of sexual assault in the early 2000s.

According to reports, the jury of seven women and five men reached the verdict after seven days of deliberation, but couldn’t decide on another sexual assault charge involving an ex-girlfriend, Chrissie Carnell-Bixler, with 8 of 12 jurors favoring a guilty verdict.

The retrial comes after three women — Carnell-Bixler and two Jane Does — came forward over six years ago and accused Masterson of sexually assaulting them between 2001 and 2003, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Masterson allegedly drugged and raped the women in his Hollywood Hills home. A judge declared the first round of deliberations a mistrial in November after the jury deadlocked.

Before the sentencing on Thursday, Masterson’s lawyer, Shawn Holley, reportedly told the judge that “his life that will be impacted by what you decide today.”

“And the life of his 9-year-old daughter, who means the world to him, and to whom he means the world,” Holley said. “He has lived an exemplary life, he has been an extraordinary father, husband, brother, son, co-worker and community servant.”

Masterson rose to fame in the late 1990s and early 2000s while starring in “That ’70s Show” alongside Ashton Kutcher, Mila Kunis, and Topher Grace.

In 2016, Masteron and Kutcher reunited on the Netflix comedy “The Ranch” until the sitcom wrote his character off the show following a Los Angeles Police Department investigation.

The women reportedly testified that church officials conspired with Masterson to cover up the incidents and not to report a member to law enforcement. They have previously said the reason LAPD and other law enforcement agencies refused to pursue Masterson was due to his affiliation with the Church of Scientology, and the church intervened in his case, impeding the investigation by filing “50 affidavits from Scientologists who denied the woman’s account.”

Scientology church officials have “vehemently denied having any policy that forbids members from going to secular authorities,” the Associated Press reported.

After the verdict earlier this year, the church told the outlet in a statement that the “testimony and descriptions of Scientology beliefs” during the trial were “uniformly false.”

“The Church has no policy prohibiting or discouraging members from reporting criminal conduct of anyone — Scientologists or not — to law enforcement,” the statement said.

Masterson reportedly said previously that the sexual relations between him and his accusers were consensual and denied the rape allegations that the women brought against him during the #MeToo wave in 2018.

“It seems as if you are presumed guilty the moment you are accused,” he said when the allegations were first brought against him.

Masterson, who did not testify or have his lawyers call witnesses, will be eligible for parole after serving 25 1/2 years, but could reportedly be imprisoned for life.

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