Content warning This story discusses details of sexual assault and abuse.

In Danny Masterson’s first trial, which followed weeks of graphic testimony and offered insight into Scientology’s inner world, the jury ended up deadlocked, resulting in a mistrial. He had faced three counts of forcible rape and pleaded not guilty to all charges.

After being retried this spring, Masterson was found guilty of two counts of rape, while the jury was unable to reach a verdict on the third count, which alleged sexual assault on a former girlfriend. However, the vote reportedly leaned 8-4 in favor of conviction.

Masterson did not testify in either trial, but his three accusers provided testimony in both cases.

Following his conviction on May 31, Masterson, who had previously been free on $3.3 million bail, was remanded to custody.

On September 7, after Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Charlaine F. Olmedo rejected the defense’s motion for a new trial, Masterson was sentenced to 30 years to life in prison. Nevertheless, he continues to assert his innocence through his legal team.

Masterson’s attorney, Shawn Holley, stated that the verdicts against him were “not supported by the evidence” and announced plans to appeal the conviction. She expressed confidence that the convictions would be overturned.

On the other hand, the prosecution considers the case closed and commends the courage of the victims for coming forward, hoping that the sentence will bring them peace and set an example for others.

A civil lawsuit against Masterson and the Church of Scientology filed by four women and one of their husbands is pending and was scheduled to go to trial after the conclusion of the criminal proceedings.

In 2020, Masterson was charged with sexually assaulting three women in separate incidents alleged to have occurred between 2001 and 2003 at his Hollywood Hills home. He had remained free on $3.3 million bail.

Masterson’s attorney asserted his innocence following his arrest in June 2020, stating that they were confident he would be exonerated when all the evidence came to light and witnesses had the opportunity to testify.

Masterson’s first trial commenced with opening statements on October 18, 2022, following a week of jury selection that involved questioning potential jurors about their familiarity with Scientology.

During the trial, it was revealed that Masterson, married to Bijou Phillips since 2011, was an active member of the Church of Scientology, while his three accusers, who were not publicly identified by their full names, claimed they had been members when the alleged rapes occurred.

In response to a 2019 lawsuit accusing him of sexual assault and the church of harassing his alleged victims, Masterson stated that he would fight the lawsuit in court and intended to sue his accusers once the case was dismissed.

Masterson and the church alleged that his accusers had adopted talking points from an anti-Scientology blog and that at least one of them was encouraged to report him to the police by prominent ex-Scientologist Leah Remini. The church called the lawsuit “ludicrous” and “a sham.”

After Masterson was charged, Remini expressed her support for the victims and criticized Scientology, stating that their days of getting away with such behavior were ending.

During the trial, the three women who had accused Masterson of rape testified that they had been initially reluctant to go to the police due to pressure from the church. One accuser claimed she was instructed not to use specific language when discussing the alleged assault with Scientology officials. Another testified that a church lawyer came to her home and warned her she would be expelled from the religion if she reported Masterson to the authorities.

While defense attorney Phillip Cohen acknowledged in court that Scientology might be a significant factor, he clarified that the religion itself was not on trial.

These were the most shocking moments from Danny Masterson’s first rape trial.

In his opening statement on October 18, Deputy District Attorney Reinhold Mueller provided details of alleged non-consensual sexual encounters involving Danny Masterson:

Jen B.’s Encounter (September 2002): Jen B. had planned to meet with her friend Brie Shaffer and others at a bar. Masterson ordered Jen a drink, and she ended up at his house, feeling intoxicated. She did not vocally object to kissing and sexual activity, but she alleges that Masterson flipped her onto her stomach and anally penetrated her, causing her to injure her back. Jen did not report this incident to the police at the time because she believed it wasn’t rape due to some level of consent.

Jen B.’s Reported Assault (April 2003): This incident took place in April 2003 when Jen B. was at a club with friends. After her plans for a ride and a place to stay fell through, she ended up at Masterson’s house. He provided her with an alcoholic beverage, and she became disoriented. Jen’s recollection includes Masterson pulling her into a hot tub, then upstairs to a bathroom. She alleged that Masterson forcibly engaged in sexual activity with her, despite her protests, and she lost consciousness during the encounter. At one point, Masterson allegedly grabbed a gun when he heard someone approaching. Jen reported the rape to her Church of Scientology “ethics officer,” who discouraged her from using the term “rape” and warned her about the consequences of involving the police.

Christina B.’s Accusations (2001-2002): Christina B., who had joined the Church of Scientology at Masterson’s insistence during their relationship, accused Masterson of becoming controlling and sexually aggressive. She alleged that on multiple occasions, she woke up to find Masterson having sex with her without her consent. One time, she screamed and tried to fight him off, leading to physical violence. After a night out in 2001, Christina woke up at Masterson’s house, injured, bleeding, and with no memory of the previous evening. Masterson allegedly told her he had anal sex with her while she was unconscious. When she reported this to her ethics officer at the Church of Scientology, she was told that she couldn’t be raped by her “2D” (a term referring to a partner). Christina eventually reported the rape to the police in 2016, encouraged by her husband.

N. Trout’s Account: Jane Doe #2, identified as N. Trout, said she went to Masterson’s house after a night out with friends. They had drinks, and Masterson persuaded her to get into the hot tub. She agreed but stated she wouldn’t have sex. While in the shower, Masterson initiated sexual activity despite her objections. They then moved to the bed, where N. repeatedly said “no,” but Masterson persisted until she felt like a “limp rag doll.” She also vomited during the encounter.

These accounts were presented in court as part of the case against Danny Masterson.

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