Tthe Special Circumstances Committee in the Los Angeles District Attorney’s Office has approved charges against Scientology actor and star of That 70's Show Danny Masterson for multiple violent rapes.
The sex crimes penal code the rapes fall under carries with it a life sentence in prison. State penal code 667.61 is also known as California's "one-strike law," a law described as "among the state's stiffest criminal sentencing provisions."
The penal code is known for the stiff sentence because it carries penalties of 15 years-to-life and 25 years-to-life for sex crimes. Thanks to a 1994 amendment to the code under "Jessica's Law" from 2006, there is no statute of limitations.
The charges have been approved by the DA's powerful internal committee made up of managers in the DA’s office and now the case is only waiting for approval from the District Attorney herself.
The charges stem from four women who came forward to allege that Masterson raped them between 2001 and 2004. One victim reported the rapes to the LAPD in 2004 but because of immense pressure from the Church of Scientology, the case was closed.
Three victims came forward in 2016, all of whom were also Scientologists. The Huffington Post reported that despite "overwhelming evidence" the case was being delayed due to a "slow roll" in the DA's office.
We now know the reason for the delay is because prosecutors were seeking such a severe penalty which required review by the Special Circumstances Committee.
One victim told police she had been drugged at an April 2003 party at Masterson's house and when she woke up she was being raped by Masterson. When she tried to break free, Masterson choked her unconscious.
Another victim also reported being drugged and told the actor no several times. "He flipped me over and just started pounding me. I was trying not to vomit. I said no like 50 times," she said.
"I was saying no a lot, but it didn’t matter to him. I kept trying not to puke on his bed while he was doing it. It was pretty brutal."
The police report says, "Victim went to bed and when she woke up and was bleeding from her anus. Victim confronted the suspect, he laughed at her and told her he had sex with her in her anus."
The despicable actions of Masterson were covered up by the Church of Scientology who used everything in their power to make the crimes disappear.
Hopefully, these women will get justice when District Attorney Jackie Lacey signs off on the charges and Masterson is arrested.
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