Nick Carter has filed a countersuit against a woman who claimed he sexually assaulted her in 2001. Shannon Ruth, who is now 43, said she was 17 at the time.
TMZ reports he filed his counterclaim on Thursday and is seeking in excess of $2.35 million in damages, which he estimates is the amount of money he and the Backstreet Boys lost in canceled appearances and endorsement deals since she came forward with her claims in December.
Carter’s lawyers refute Ruth’s allegations that he sexually assaulted her after a BSB concert in Tacoma, Washington. They also questioned Ruth’s credibility by citing previous claims she made against him that “changed repeatedly and materially over time.”
His team claims Ruth’s assault allegations were previously investigated and no criminal charges were recommended.
Carter’s team further alleges Ruth’s parents, Jerome and Melissa Schuman, are coercing their daughter into accusing the singer as part of an extortion attempt to take advantage of the #MeToo movement.
Carter’s team also alleges Ruth and her parents attempted to prey on Aaron Carter before his death. The attorneys claim the Schumans and Ruth tried taking advantage of “Aaron’s fragile condition and family stresses to cloak their defamatory campaign with credibility, relentlessly and repeatedly using Aaron to try to legitimize their frivolous tales.”
Carter’s team claims Aaron realized he was being used. On the day Aaron died, Jerome Schuman tweeted, “I am sad that the chess game we started together was never finished.”
The singer’s attorney, Michael Holtz, said in a statement, “Nick has been the target of a malicious and long-running conspiracy. He has never done the outrageous things of which he has been accused; in fact, he is the victim of a calculated and concerted disinformation campaign designed to destroy his reputation.”
Ruth’s legal team hasn’t responded.
If you are affected by abuse and needing support, or know someone who is, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673). You can also chat online at thehotline.org or online.rainn.org, respectively.
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