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Jury in Danny Masterson’s Rape Trial Told to Start Over After Two Jury Get Covid-19

Updated: Dec 2, 2022

Danny Masterson’s rape trial came back in session on Monday, but two jurors were dismissed due to Covid-19.

Danny Masterson has been on trial for allegedly raping women from 2001 until 2003. He faces up to 45 years in jail if he's convicted. (Photo: Splash)

After a weeklong Thanksgiving break, the jury in Danny Masterson’s trial were told to start its deliberations over. The reason? Two jurors contracted Covid-19.

On November 18, the jury had informed Judge Charlaine Omedo that it was unable to reach a verdict. The announcement came after three days of deliberations. Olmedo told the jury that they can take the week off for Thanksgiving and return for deliberations on Monday. This caused quite the stir as the move was based on the controversial “Allen Charge.”

On Sunday, two jurors informed Judge Olmedo about their Covid-19 infection, and they were replaced by two alternates. Olmedo informed the jury that they had to restart their deliberations as if their previous deliberations did not take place. The jury previously consisted of seven women and five men; now, it consists of six men and six women.

Masterson played Steven Hyde on “That ‘70s Show” and he’s an active member of the controversial religious group Scientology. His ties to Scientology and its alleged harassment of former members were a huge part of the trial. The alleged victims were part of the religion at the time of the alleged incidents, though, they have since left the organization.

One of the alleged victims testified at a preliminary hearing that she hesitated to report the incident to the police due to pressure from the church. Another accuser says that she was told not to use “the R-word” when she told Scientology officials about the alleged assault. Another testified that one of the church’s lawyers came to her home and warned her that she would be kicked out from the organization if she went to the authorities about the alleged assault.

Masterson’ defense attorney, Philip Cohen, didn’t want the replacement of the two dismissed jurors and he also made the motion for a mistrial. Both motions were denied.

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