It’s a legal win and a loss for Backstreet Boys‘ Nick Carter.
A judge has ruled that Carter can continue with his countersuit against ex-Dream member Melissa Schuman, People reports.
The Las Vegas judge cited sufficient evidence for Nick to be able to move forward with the suit, which accuses Schuman and Shannon Ruth — both of whom are suing Nick for sexual assault — of conspiring to “defame and vilify” him and “ruin his reputation for the purposes of … extorting money.”
Schuman accused Nick of assaulting her in 2003; she sued him in April 2023. Shannon Ruth sued Nick last year, claiming he’d assaulted her in 2001. Nick has denied both allegations.
In a statement to People regarding the August 29 ruling, Nick’s lawyer said that it “confirms that Nick will be able to pursue that truth to its inevitable conclusion and expose the Schumans’ and their co-conspirators’ deceit and deplorable conduct.”
But days before the judge’s ruling, a third woman filed a complaint against Nick for sexual assault, Billboard reports. A woman identified only as “A.R.” claims that Nick assaulted her on multiple occasions in 2003, when she was 15.
The accuser’s lawyers says that as a result of the abuse, the woman has experienced “severe emotional distress, physical anguish, intimacy issues, and other complex trauma.”
Billboard reports that in a statement, Nick’s lawyers called the accusations “ridiculous,” saying they’d been investigated at the time and were judged to be “meritless.”
But the accuser’s lawyer noted in a statement, “Abusers can take notice that just because they avoided prison doesn’t mean they don’t have to answer to a jury for their actions.”
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.
Copyright © 2023, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.