LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — “That ‘70s Show” actor Danny Masterson was charged Wednesday with forcibly raping three women, Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey said.
Masterson, 44, was charged with three counts of rape by force or fear, according to the DA’s office. The case was filed for warrant Tuesday. Masterson was booked in downtown L.A., posting bail several hours later, and was allowed to return home.
The actor, best known for his role as Steven on the TV hit “That ‘70s Show,” is accused of raping a 23-year-old woman in 2001, a 28-year-old woman in April of 2003, and another 23-year-old woman he had invited to his Hollywood Hills home later that fall.
According to Deputy District Attorney Reinhold Mueller, all of the crimes happened at Masterson’s home.
The District Attorney’s Office declined to file sexual assault charges against Masterson in two other cases, one for insufficient evidence and the other because it was beyond the statute of limitations.
In a statement, an attorney for Masterson said the actor and his wife were in “complete shock” over the allegations, adding, “Mr. Masterson is innocent and we’re confident he’ll be exonerated.”
Three women came forward to accuse Masterson of rape in 2017 even before the #MeToo movement took off later that fall with allegations against Hollywood movie mogul Harvey Weinstein. Masterson was written out of the Netflix comedy “The Ranch” in December of that year as the LAPD investigated the allegations.
Masterson is scheduled to be arraigned on Sept. 18. If convicted as charged, he faces a possible maximum sentence of 45 years to life in state prison.