Ashton Kutcher resigns from anti-child abuse organization Thorn and apologizes again for writing a letter of support to rapist Danny Masterson: ‘It was an error of judgement’
- Kutcher and his wife Mila Kunis wrote letters confirming Masterson’s character
- They said he was “honest” and kept Kutcher away from drugs
- Since then, they have been hit by a tidal wave of backlash
Ashton Kutcher has stepped down from the board of an anti-child abuse organization he co-founded and apologized again for the ill-advised letter of support he wrote for his convicted rapist friend Danny Masterson.
In a letter to the Thorn organization, Kutcher said the letters he and his wife Mila Kunis wrote were an “error in judgment.”
“Victims of sexual abuse have been historically silenced and the character statement I submitted is yet another painful example of questioning victims who are brave enough to share their experiences.
Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis apologize in their video for supporting rapist Danny Masterson
“After my wife and I spent several days of listening, personal reflection, learning and conversations with the survivors, staff and leadership of Thorn, I have decided that it is my responsibility to step down as Chairman of the Board of Directors.
“I cannot allow my lapse in judgment to distract from our efforts and the children we serve,” he wrote.
The stars were hit by a flood of backlash after their letters calling Masterson an “honest” man were made public.
They did nothing to influence the judge. Masterson was sentenced to thirty years in prison.
Kutcher was an outspoken advocate for the organization, appearing before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee to testify about the horrors of child sex trafficking he had been exposed to through his work for the charity.
They met Masterson on That 70s Show. In an apology video posted to social media, the couple said they had reflected on their support of Masterson and now realized it was unwise
They met Masterson on That 70s Show.
In an apology video on social media, the couple said they had reflected on their support of Masterson and now realized it was unwise.
Masterson, a Scientologist, has long denied his victims’ allegations.
All three of his accusers were former members of the church.
He was found guilty of raping two women.
During the trial he enjoyed the support of his wife, actress Bijou Phillips.
Friends spoken to People magazine says this week that she has “no plans” to divorce him.
Kutcher’s resignation was welcomed by the charity’s board.
‘I have worked with Ashton in the field of child protection for the past ten years. He has been a strong advocate for children and has worked tirelessly to protect them from sexual abuse.
By founding the DNA Foundation, which later became Thorn, he helped build the organization into a key global resource for law enforcement, technology companies and others in the fight against child sexual exploitation.
He made a difference,” Thorn board member Ernie Allen said in an announcement on the organization’s website.
Another said: “His unwavering dedication and commitment to Thorn throughout his journey has made the organization the leader it is in the child safety ecosystem.
“It was my privilege to accompany him on this mission.”
In letters to the court before his sentencing, Masterson’s victims described how he drugged and then attacked them.
“I still can’t remember what I wore out the door, (attorney) Mr. Cohen. But I do know one thing you didn’t ask me: I’ve never been able to find my underwear.
“I know this because when I got home I wasn’t wearing anything.
“And I remember being angry and embarrassed to think that my underwear was somewhere at Danny’s house,” one of the victims wrote.