One of Danny Masterson’s victims has spoken out for the first time since the That 70s Show star was convicted of two counts of rape in a Los Angeles court on Wednesday.
In a brief statement to journalist Yashar Ali, Jane Doe 1 said: ‘This isn’t about me. I just want people to do the right thing. Please tell the truth. Please tell the truth.’
During the trial, it was claimed that Masterson’s victims and their families had been subject to harassment by representatives of the Church of Scientology. Masterson is a long time member of the church.
The church denied these allegations in a statement to DailyMail.com.
‘There is not a scintilla of evidence supporting the scandalous allegations that the Church harassed the accusers. Every single instance of supposed harassment by the Church is false, and has been ‘debunked,’ the church said.
A victim of That 70s Show star Danny Masterson has spoken out after the actor was found guilty of raping her and another woman
Bijou Phillips is pictured leaving the courthouse in Los Angeles after actor Danny Masterson is found guilty of 2 out of 3 counts of rape in the retrial
One of his victims, known as Jane Doe One, has insisted the situation ‘isn’t about me’ and that she just wants people ‘to do the right thing’
Scientology was front and center during both criminal trials. All three women testified that the reason they took so long to report him to the police was their fear of retribution from the Church of Scientology
Masterson was convicted of raping two women at his Hollywood Hills home and immediately denied bail and led to the cells in handcuffs.
The jurors delivered their unanimous verdicts on the charges and deadlocked on a third count that he raped a third woman between 2001 and 2003.
All three women who accused him of rape testified that the reason they took so long to report him to the police was their fear of retribution from the Church of Scientology.
In its statement to DailyMail.com, the Church of Scientology said that bringing the religion into the rape trial was an ‘unprecedented violation of the First Amendment and affects the due process of every American.’
The statement said that making reference to Masterson’s religion in the trial was an effort by Deputy District Attorney Ariel Anson to ‘introduce prejudice and inflame bigotry.’
Anson’s references to the church during the trial are called ‘uniformly false.’
Leah Remini, who is a former Scientologist, responded to Masterson’s conviction and labelled it a ‘relief’ while praising the victims as heroes.
The guilty verdicts on Wednesday came on the eighth day of jury deliberations. Jurors found him guilty of raping victims Jane Doe One and Jane Doe Two.
On the third charge of raping Jane Doe Three, the jury was ‘hopelessly deadlocked’ at eight in favor of guilty and four in favor of not guilty.
Remini is an outspoken critic of Scientology and she was in court during Masterson’s rape trial.
Actress Leah Remini, who is a former Scientologist, responded to Masterson’s conviction and labelled it a ‘relief’ while praising the victims as heroes
Remini called the conviction a ‘relief’ and praised the women for seeking justice despite the ‘attacks and harassment from Scientology and Danny’s well-funded legal team’
Masterson played wise-cracking Steven Hyde (top right) on That ’70s Show from 1998 to 2006
Actress Remini is an outspoken critic of Scientology and she was in court during Masterson’s rape trial, on April 24
She called the conviction a ‘relief’ and praised the women for seeking justice despite the ‘attacks and harassment from Scientology and Danny’s well-funded legal team’.
And she promised that more accountability will come from the church’s leadership.
‘The women who survived Danny Masterson’s predation are heroes,’ Remini wrote on Instagram.
‘They soldiered on, determined to seek justice. While it is up to them to decide whether they are satisfied with this verdict, I am relieved that Danny Masterson is facing some justice after over 20 years of brutal sexual violence with no criminal consequences.’
She addressed the third woman following the jury’s split decision on a third charge of rape and said: ‘I know Danny raped you; I know that Scientology tried to destroy you.
‘However, this case would not have moved forward and resulted in two guilty verdicts if it were not for you. I am sorry you didn’t receive a guilty verdict on your charges; you deserved one.
‘But please never forget that justice would not have been served were it not for you.’
And Remini hit out at Scientology officials, including leader David Miscavige, and claimed they obstructed justice in the case.
Remini and Masterson pictured at a benefit dinner and concert for Project Restart and the New York Rescue Workers Detoxification Project, November 3, 2007 in Las Vegas
She added: ‘Although Scientology and its leader, David Miscavige, were not formal defendants, they played a significant role in obstructing justice in this case and other instances of sexual violence.
‘Scientology officials, civilian Scientologists, and their proxies have conspired to silence victims and intimidate witnesses for decades.
‘This case is just the beginning of our plan to hold them accountable.’
Masterson looked stunned as jurors delivered their unanimous verdicts on two of the three charges and his wife Bijou Phillips broke down in tears.
She was inconsolable as he was led away in handcuffs and Judge Charlaine Olmedo ordered her to ‘maintain her composure’ – or go outside.
Immediately after the judge announced she was remanding the actor, a sheriff’s bailiff pulled his arms behind his back and handcuffed him.
Masterson’s attorney, Philip Cohen, argued that his client should be allowed to remain on bail, wearing an electronic monitor and being kept on 24-hour house arrest.
But Judge Olmedo rejected his plea saying Masterson’s offenses were ‘serious and violent felonies’ and called him a ‘potential flight risk.’
Reinhold Mueller, the deputy district attorney, told the court that he agreed with Judge Olmedo’s decision to revoke Masterson’s bail, echoing her comment and saying: ‘These were serious and violent offenses.’
On the charge of raping Jane Doe 3 – which jurors remained hung on – the judge asked ‘if there is any reasonable possibility of arriving at a verdict.’
The female jury foreperson answered ‘No,’ adding that the panel voted five times without being able to come up with a unanimous decision.
Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón said in a statement after the verdict: ‘In April 2003, Masterson raped a 28-year-old woman and sometime between October and December of that year he sexually assaulted a 23-year-old woman who he had invited to his Hollywood Hills home.
‘We want to express our gratitude to the three women who came forward and bravely shared their experiences. Their courage and strength have been an inspiration to us all.
‘While we are disappointed that the jury did not convict on all counts, we respect their decision. The verdicts handed down by the jury in this case were undoubtedly a difficult one to reach and we thank the jurors for their service.’
All three women are also suing the actor and the Church of Scientology in civil court, claiming that they’ve been harassed and intimidated since reporting him to police.
But the Church of Scientology has denied any wrongdoing and said the district attorney had ‘an anti-Scientology agenda’ and has ‘unconscionably centered his prosecution on religion and fabrications about the Church hoping to prejudice the jury and inflame bigotry’.
It also said it does not have a policy which prohibits or discourages ‘members from reporting criminal conduct of anyone, Scientologists or not, to law enforcement’.
‘Allegations of harassment are nothing but an attempted money grab in a parallel civil suit filed by the Jane Does,’ the church said in a previous statement.
‘Every single instance of supposed harassment by the church has been debunked.’
Masterson – who played smart-mouthed Steven Hyde on That ’70s Show – was accused of raping the three women at his Hollywood Hills home between 2001 and 2003.
He pleaded not guilty to all the charges and he was looking at a sentence of 45 years to life in prison if he had been convicted on all three.
The Scientologist, 47, was on trial for rape for a second time after his first ended in a mistrial in November, with a jury deadlocked on all counts
His accusers, who DailyMail.com is identifying only as Jane Does 1 through 3 – are all former Scientologists. In their civil case they claim that they’ve been harassed and intimidated since reporting him to police.
A status hearing on that case is scheduled for June 28.
They said that church officials warned them not to use the word rape; that turning in a fellow Scientologist to law enforcement was considered a ‘high crime’; and if they disobeyed that doctrine, they could be declared a ‘suppressive person’ – cast out by the church and left alone, cut off from family and friends.
In the second trial, prosecutors put much more emphasis than they did in the first on their claims that Masterson drugged his alleged victims by spiking drinks he gave them before raping them.
Calling Masterson a ‘predator’, Deputy District Attorney Ariel Anson said in her closing argument: ‘It all starts with a drink. This is his playbook.
‘The defendant drugged his victims to be in control. When he drugs them, he is completely able to control them. And he does it over and over again.’
Her prosecuting partner, Mueller, added – as he pointed at Masterson – ‘After they were drugged, they were raped by this man over here.
‘It’s beyond reasonable doubt that this man drugged these women and raped them. It’s time to hold Mr Masterson accountable for what he’s done.’
Masterson’s lawyer, Philip Cohen, objected Wednesday to the prosecution’s frequent referrals to his client drugging his alleged victims before raping them and called for a mistrial, saying, ‘drugging does not constitute forcible rape.’
But Judge Olmedo denied his mistrial motion, telling him that when considering drugging and use of force in a rape case, ‘one does not necessarily preclude the other.’
Cohen, pointed out that there are no toxicology reports to back up the 20-year-old drugging allegations against his client – who has always maintained that the sex with the three Jane Does was ‘consensual.’
Another difference between the two trials was the addition in the second of testimony from another ‘victim’ – a woman who claimed Masterson raped her in Toronto in 2000, though he was never charged with the alleged assault.
Prosecutors added her to the witness list to establish a pattern of ‘prior bad acts’ by Masterson.
But Cohen dismissed the move, saying the new accuser was brought in for the retrial to ‘save the case’ for the DA.
Of the three women whose rape Masterson was charged with, Jane Doe 1 had told the court in the first trial that in April 2003 she was at the actor’s house where he gave her a fruity red drink with vodka that made her feel woozy.
She said he then threw her in his Jacuzzi and carried her upstairs where she passed out, and woke up to find him raping her.
She fought back, pushed a pillow into his face, she told the jury.
But he pushed it back into her face, smothering her and she blacked out again.
When she woke, she said, Masterson opened a bedside drawer and pulled out a gun which he brandished, telling her: ‘Don’t f**king move.’
Remini also hit out at Scientology officials, including leader David Miscavige, and claimed they obstructed justice in the case
Jane Doe 3 – who lived with Masterson for six years – was only 17 when she met him and he persuaded her to become a Scientologist, the court heard.
About a year into their relationship he became very controlling and very aggressive sexually. She said she would often wake up at night and he would be on top of her, having sex with her.
In one such incident in November 2001, when she woke up to find him having sex with her, she told him no and tried to push him off, the court heard.
When that didn’t work, she pulled his hair. But he retaliated by hitting her across the face and calling her ‘white trash,’ said prosecutors.
Jane Doe 2 met Masterson at a bar in 2003 and gave him her phone number.
He called her and invited her to his home. She went, and, the court heard, after having a drink and a stint in his Jacuzzi, she found herself in his bathroom shower with him where he ‘suddenly shoved his penis into her vagina.
‘She said no, I told you no sex.’
They ended up in Masterson’s bed where, despite her protests, he flipped her over and started pounding her from behind ‘like a jackhammer,’ she testified, adding that she felt ‘like a limp rag doll.’
Masterson’s attorney, Cohen, challenged ‘inconsistencies’ in the women’s testimony and statements to police, accusing them of ‘blatant fabrications.’
And he asserted that the three had ‘colluded,’ choreographing and ‘tweaking’ their rape stories to help get Masterson convicted – which in turn could help them win a big cash payout in the civil lawsuit they have brought against him and the Church of Scientology.
Before the judge turned the case over to the jury just before 10am on May 17, Mueller countered Cohen’s ‘inconsistencies’ argument, telling jurors: ‘Don’t be fooled – he (Cohen) is trying to get you to think there is a grand conspiracy.
‘Each of these victims spoke individually about what happened to them before they spoke to each other. So how is that a conspiracy?
‘There is no conspiracy. There was no tweaking. He’s guilty.
‘It’s not reasonable to believe any of these victims were lying.’
Last year, Masterson was tried on the same charges, but the case collapsed when the jurors were left hopelessly deadlocked.
Now, Masterson could get 30 years in prison when he is sentenced.
The judge ordered Masterson – who had been free on $3.3 million bail since his arrest three years ago – to be taken into custody, and scheduled a hearing for August 4, where his attorneys will argue for bail to be reinstated.