Ashton Kutcher Addresses Danny Masterson Rape Allegations
Ashton Kutcher is speaking out about former co-star Danny Masterson's rape allegations for the first time.
Masterson—who co-starred alongside Kutcher in That ‘70s Show and Netflix's The Ranch—was arrested and charged in 2020 for three counts of rape by force or fear with three separate women, Kutcher is sharing his perspective on the actor's legal troubles.
"I wholesale feel for anybody who feels like they were violated in any way," he told Esquire in an article published Jan. 31, adding that he wants Masterson "to be found innocent of the charges brought against him."
However, the 44-year-old—who also reflected on their time working together, noting Masterson was a mentor during his early years in Hollywood—explained that the ultimate answer isn't so simple.
"Ultimately, I can't know," Kutcher continued. "I'm not the judge. I'm not the jury. I'm not the DA. I'm not the victim. And I'm not the accused. And so, in that case, I don't have a space to comment." After pausing, as the outlet noted, he added, "I just don't know."
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In June 2020, Masterson was arrested and charged for three counts of rape by force or fear with three separate women on different occasions between 2001 and 2003, according to records obtained by E! News.
After his arrest, Masterson's attorney asserted his client's innocence telling E! News at the time, "We're confident that he will be exonerated when all the evidence finally comes to light and witnesses have the opportunity to testify."
Though Masterson is a member of the Church of Scientology, his accusers are former members who no longer associate with the religion, per the Associated Press. During a May 2021 preliminary hearing, according to the outlet, one of the accusers testified that she decided not to file a report with police because of her and Masterson's close ties to the Church.
In January 2021, Masterson, 46, pleaded not guilty to all three counts. More than a year later, his case was declared a mistrial in November 2022 after a jury was unable to come to collective decisions for all three charges that Masterson was facing.
The L.A. County District Attorney's Office addressed the development, sharing in a statement they were "disappointed with the outcome."
"We also want to give our heartfelt appreciation to the victims for bravely stepping forward and recounting their harrowing experiences," the Nov. 20 statement shared to E! News read at the time. "We also are thankful for the hard work of the prosecution team and we will now consider our next steps as it relates to prosecuting this case."
A new trial date has been set for March 27, 2023.
E! News has reached out to Masterson's attorney for comment.
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