Danny Masterson has been found guilty of raping two women.
Masterson, who is best known for his role as Steven Hyde in That ’70s Show, initially went to trial in 2022 for three counts of rape by force between 2001 and 2003. However, the jury was unable to reach a verdict and the trial was declared a mistrial.
According to the ABC, the retrial began last week and the jury consisted of seven women and five men. They deliberated for more than a week to come to a verdict on the charges.
The prosecution claimed that Masterson had drugged the women prior to raping them. They claimed that in the years following, he used his status as a celebrity and member of The Church of Scientology to avoid the consequences.
“You don’t want to have sex? You don’t have a choice,” Deputy District Attorney Ariel Anson said during his closing argument.
“The defendant makes that choice for these victims. And he does it, over and over and over again.”
Masterson’s lawyer, Philip Cohen, claimed that the women’s accounts were inconsistent and that there was plenty of reasonable doubt in the case.
“Miss Anson presented a case as if she was arguing a drugging case. Maybe it’s because there is no evidence of force or violence” Mr Cohen said, per the ABC.
He also tried to make another motion for mistrial because drugging was not in the initial charges. However, Judge Charlaine Olmedo believed that the prosecution was acting within the bounds of the retrial by claiming the women were drugged.
Image Credit: Getty / Lucy Nicholson