Danny Masterson and the Church of Scientology are being sued by four women who allege they were the victims of stalking and intimidation after they filed reports with the LAPD alleging they were sexually assaulted by the former “That ’70s Show” star.
On Wednesdday, reports The Hollywood Reporter, Chrissie Carnell Bixler, Marie Riales and two women identified as Jane Does filed a complaint in L.A. County Superior Court, alleging Masterson and members of the church harassed them and their families in an attempt to silence them.
In 2017, Masterson was fired from Netflix comedy “The Ranch” and dropped by the UTA talent agency after the LAPD confirmed that officers were investigating allegations of sexual assault from “multiple women” (Masterson denied the allegations, and insisted that all sexual encounters were consensual).
According to their complaint, the plaintiffs claim that Scientology forbids church members from contacting police to report a crime committed by any other member, and that the telephones in some Scientology facilities have disabled the 911 calling feature for this purpose.
However, the suit adds that when church members come forward to report sexual abuse, their alleged attackers are typically treated as the victims.
“Historically, when a member has complained of suffering sexual abuse, this disclosure has resulted in the member being forced to confront or apologize to his or her abuser and undergo a program to identify what ‘pulled in’ the abuse,” states the complaint.
Bixler alleges she and Masterson began dating in 1996, and eventually moved in with him. During this time, she alleges Masterson would regularly force her to have sex with him, and would become violent if she didn’t capitulate.
In addition, Bixler maintains that masterson forced her to join the church, where she was told that part of her role as his girlfriend was “to give him sex whenever he wants it.”
In 2002, Bixler says that Masterson had sex with her while she was unconscious, but when she reported the incident to the church she was told not to use the word “rape” because “you can’t be raped by someone you are in a consensual relationship with.”
When she and Masterson broke up later that year, Bixler says she was made to sign a document saying she would never sue him or speak publicly about their relationship. After leaving the church in 2016, Bixler filed a sexual assault report with the LAPD, at which point she claims “her car was broken into, people parked in vans outside her home and filmed her family and her security system was hacked multiple times.”
In addition to Bixler’s claims, the other women likewise state that they feared for their safety and experienced “substantial emotional distress” due to the alleged harassment.
Masterson, however, continues to deny Bixler’s allegations, and vows to defend himself in court.
“I’m not going to fight my ex-girlfriend in the media like she’s been baiting me to do for more than two years. I will beat her in court — and look forward to it because the public will finally be able learn the truth and see how I’ve been railroaded by this woman,” Masterson told THR in a statement.
“And once her lawsuit is thrown out, I intend to sue her and the others who jumped on the bandwagon for the damage they caused me and my family.”
The Church of Scientology has yet to respond to THR‘s request for comment.