Actress and activist Leah Remini warned the Church of Scientology that the announcement of rape charges against member Danny Masterson are “just the beginning” of a reckoning for the organization.
Masterson, known for his acting roles in the sitcoms “That ’70s Show” and “The Ranch,” was charged with raping three women between 2001 and 2003 by the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office Wednesday. If convicted, he could face 45 years to life in prison, the district attorney’s office said in a news release.
The charges against Masterson followed allegations made in 2017 when the victims, who were also Scientologists, reported the crimes to the organization. Four women subsequently sued Masterson, the Church of Scientology, and its controversial leader David Miscavige for allegedly stalking them and attempting to obstruct law enforcement’s investigation into their claims.
Remini, who has become one of Scientology’s most outspoken critics since leaving the organization in 2013, featured two of the victims in the finale of her A&E documentary series, “Scientology and the Aftermath.”
“Finally, victims are being heard when it comes to Scientology!” Remini tweeted in response to news of the charges against Masterson. “This is just the beginning Scientology, your days of getting away with it is coming to an end!”
In the finale, one of the alleged victims, Crissie Bixler, a former girlfriend of Masterson’s, described a 2001 incident in which she said that she blacked out after they went out for dinner. Upon waking the next morning she described being in pain and feeling like she had been poisoned.
When she asked Masterson what happened, “He started laughing and said, ‘I had sex with you,'” Bixler claimed. She then remembered asking, “Was I unconscious?” to which Masterson reportedly replied, “Yes.”
Bixler, who joined the Church of Scientology when she began dating Masterson, said that she was turned away when she reported the incident to an official in the organization.
“It’s not rape if you’ve been in a consensual relationship,” Bixler recalled the official told her, though the organization has denied that Bixler ever approached anyone within it about her accusations.
Video of Bixler’s comments are included in the Huffington Post’s report on the charges against Masterson.
Another alleged victim, Bobette Riales, also spoke out during the episode. The two other plaintiffs in the lawsuit were not interviewed because of their desire to remain anonymous.
Masterson’s arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 18.