The Backstreet Boys Holiday Special Is Cancelled & Nick Carter Is Denying Rape Allegations
A fan says he assaulted her in 2001.
A Christmas special featuring the Backstreet Boys that was supposed to air on ABC next week has been cancelled by the network after a rape lawsuit was filed against Nick Carter on Thursday.
A Very Backstreet Holiday, which was filmed in Los Angeles, was going to feature all five of the boy band members and they were going to perform songs from their 10th album A Very Backstreet Christmas.
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Variety reports ABC confirmed its decision to pull the show that was also supposed to feature appearances by Seth Rogen, Meghan Trainor, Rob Riggle, Nikki Glaser, Ron Funches and Atsuko Okatsuka.
On Thursday, a woman called Shannon "Shay" Ruth accused Carter of raping and sexually assaulting her at a Backstreet Boys concert she attended in Tacoma, Washington, in 2001.
Ruth said she was just 17 years old at the time of the events, when Carter allegedly invited her on the tour bus after the show, gave her an alcoholic beverage and then raped her.
"The last 21 years have been filled with pain, confusion, frustration, shame and self-harm that are a direct result of Nick Carter raping me," Ruth said through tears at the press conference on Thursday.
"Even though I’m autistic and live with cerebral palsy, I believe that nothing has affected me more or had a more lasting impact on my life than what Nick Carter did and said to me," the 39-year-old continued.
Ruth continued by saying Carter tried to silence her by saying no one would believe her and that she would go to jail if she told anyone.
“After he raped me, I remember him calling me a r**arded b*tch and grabbing me and leaving bruises on my arm."
"Carter took away my childhood and innocence but he cannot and will not take away my strength or my truth. I am a survivor and always will be.”
At the press conference, Ruth’s attorney Mark Boskovich said there are three other women who are named in the lawsuit alongside Ruth.
They are not being named at this time, but the lawyer noted that they have a similar storyline.
Carter has denied the allegations.
“This claim about an incident that supposedly took place more than 20 years ago is not only legally meritless but also entirely untrue," Carter's publicist, Michael Holtz, said in a statement to Narcity.
"Unfortunately, for several years now, Ms. Ruth has been manipulated into making false allegations about Nick – and those allegations have changed repeatedly and materially over time."
"No one should be fooled by a press stunt orchestrated by an opportunistic lawyer — there is nothing to this claim whatsoever, which we have no doubt the courts will quickly realize," Holtz argued.
This isn't the first time Carter has been accused of rape.
In 2017, former teen pop singer Melissa Schuman accused the boy band member of rape. She said she was 18 years old at the time of the incident, as per a People report.
Carter denied those allegations as well and was never charged.
The Backstreet Boys have a number of scheduled events coming up.
The group is scheduled for four Jingle Ball appearances over the next few days, including one in New York's Madison Square Garden on Friday.
Their international tour begins in Brazil in January and ends in New Zealand in March.
They are also scheduled to be on The Kelly Clarkson Show on Monday, December 12, for a holiday special.
If you or someone you know has been the victim of sexual assault, call the Assaulted Women's Helpline at 1-866-863-0511. You can also contact support services for male survivors of sexual assault at 1-866-887-0015. If you need immediate assistance, please call 911 or go to your nearest hospital. Support is available.