Danny Masterson is out on $3.3 million bond after being arrested Wednesday on charges of forcibly raping three women between 2001 and 2003. The That '70s Show actor was taken into custody at about 11:30 a.m. PT by the Los Angeles Police Department, and jail records indicate he posted bail that same day. Masterson has been ordered to appear in court for his arraignment on Sept. 18.
Accusations of sexual assault have shadowed the actor for years and were the reason he was written off his latest show, Netflix's The Ranch. Wednesday, Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey announced that felony charges were being pressed against Masterson. According to court documents, Masterson is accused of raping a 23-year-old woman between January and December of 2001. In April 2003, the actor allegedly raped a 28-year-old woman, and sometime between October and December of that same year, he is accused of raping a 23-year-old woman. If found guilty, Masterson could face a maximum sentence of 45 years to life in prison. Lacey also noted that the D.A.'s office declined to file sexual assault charges in two other cases, one of which had come up against the statute of limitations and the other which was cited as having insufficient evidence.
Danny's attorney, Tom Mesereau, told TMZ, "Mr. Masterson is innocent, and we're confident that he will be exonerated when all the evidence finally comes to light and witnesses have the opportunity to testify." He continued of Masterson's wife, Bijou Phillips, "Obviously, Mr. Masterson and his wife are in complete shock considering that these nearly 20-year old allegations are suddenly resulting in charges being filed, but they and their family are comforted knowing that ultimately the truth will come out. The people who know Mr. Masterson know his character and know the allegations to be false."
The felony charges come in addition to a lawsuit filed against Masterson and the Church of Scientology by four women who cited multiple incidents of being followed, having their homes watched and their property damaged. The lawsuit claims that these actions were part of the church's retaliation after coming forward with rape accusations against the actor, who is a Scientologist. One of the actor's accusers, Chrissie Carnell-Bixler, claimed he poisoned her dog during their relationship, which began in 1996 and quickly progressed to cohabitation. During their relationship, Carnell-Bixler claims Masterson would force her to have sex with him and "became violent" if she refused to do so.