Danny Masterson’s retrial for rape was concluded on Wednesday. He was found guilty of two counts. On a third charge, the jury was deadlocked.
Eight days of deliberation by a jury consisting of seven men, five women and three other members was required to reach a verdict.
The judge has not yet set a date for the sentencing, but he did tell Masterson’s lawyers to come back to court on August 4 to have a hearing.
The actor from “That ’70s Show”, was put on trial again in less than 6 months after the first mistrial.
Masterson, 47 years old, faced up to 45-years in prison for three counts of rape or sexual assault by force, fear, or coercion. These alleged crimes occurred between 2001 and 2002 at his Hollywood Hills residence.
As he was led off, his wife, actress and model Bijou Philips, wept. The rest of his family and friends were stone-faced.
In a statement released by Boies Schiller-Flexner on behalf of one of the women who was convicted in 2003 of raping Masterson at his house, she said: “I feel a range of emotions – relief, exhaustion and strength. I also feel sadness.”
Jane Doe #2 said: “I am grateful for the jury’s service and, while I was encouraged that Danny Masterson would face criminal punishment, it is devastating that he avoided criminal accountability for his heinous behavior against me.” Although I am disappointed in the outcome, I will continue to fight for justice. I plan to do this in civil court with my co-plaintiffs to expose how Scientology, and other conspirators, enabled and attempted to cover up Masterson’s monstrous behaviour.
Ariel Anson, Deputy district attorney, delivered the closing arguments to the jury on May 16.
He was arrested on June 20, 2020, and is now free after posting a bond of $3.3 million. Masterson has denied the charges, and maintained his innocence.
The defendant narcotic his victims to gain the control. Anson stated that he does this in order to remove his victims’ consent. You don’t want sex?” You have no choice. The defendant chooses for the victims. “And he does it again and again.”
Philip Cohen, Masterson’s lawyer, claimed that the district attorney had downplayed inconsistencies within the women’s stories, which were essential to proving Masterson’s guilt.
Cohen stated that “she did a nice job of ignoring most of them.” “What she sees as inconsistencies is at the core of determining, ‘Is someone reliable, credible, and believable enough to be convicted?’
Cohen filed a motion in January to dismiss the charges, citing that a retrial “would not differ materially from prior trial”, with little chance of a different result.
The Los Angeles Superior Court judge Charlaine F. Oledo declared a mistrial after the jury was “hopelessly” unable to reach a unanimous verdict in November.