Nick Carter 'shocked,' 'saddened' by singer's assault claim
NEW YORK (AP) — Nick Carter says he's "shocked and saddened" by accusations made by a singer who said he raped her about 15 years ago.
Melissa Schuman of the girl group Dream wrote in a blog post earlier this month that she was "forced to engage in an act against my will." She said the Backstreet Boy took her virginity when she was 18 and he was 22.
"I am shocked and saddened by Ms. Schuman's accusations. Melissa never expressed to me while we were together or at any time since that anything we did was not consensual," Carter said in a statement released Wednesday. "We went on to record a song and perform together, and I was always respectful and supportive of Melissa both personally and professionally."
Dream was signed to Sean "Diddy" Combs' Bad Boy Records in the earlier 2000s and produced the hit "He Loves U Not." Schuman wrote that Carter invited her to his apartment and assaulted her against her will. She said she "felt scared and trapped. He was visually and clearly growing very angry and impatient with me. I couldn't leave."
She said she tried to speak up after the incident, but that she didn't "have the money, the clout or access to an attorney who was powerful enough to stand up against my abuser's legal counsel."
"I feel I have an obligation now to come forward with the hope and intention to inspire and encourage other victims to tell their story. We are stronger in numbers," she wrote.
Carter said Wednesday "this is the first that I am hearing about these accusations, nearly two decades later."
"It is contrary to my nature and everything I hold dear to intentionally cause someone discomfort or harm," he said.
The Backstreet Boys launched a residency in Las Vegas this year and have concert planned for next year.