Backstreet Boys singer Nick Carter is responding to allegations that he sexually assaulted Melissa Schuman, formerly a member of the pop group Dream.
According to Schuman's Nov. 2 blog post, titled, "Don’t worry, I won’t tell anybody," the incident happened shortly after they were cast in a TV movie together (2004's The Hollow). She was 18 at the time; he was 22.
She shared her story more widely on Twitter on Nov. 19, writing, "I’m not afraid anymore #metoo."
Schuman says she was inspired to share her story by an article in RadarOnline that investigated another alleged assault by Carter, who is now 37.
"The victim in the above article remains unnamed and I can’t blame her," Schuman wrote. "I can’t help but feel empathy for her as well as (sickened) by the lack of belief and support. There is nothing worse than being victimized and having others call you a liar. Or claim you are looking for 15 mins of fame."
In a statement to USA TODAY, Carter denied assaulting Schuman and expressed that any interactions were consensual.
"I am shocked and saddened by Ms. Schuman’s accusations," the singer said. "Melissa never expressed to me while we were together or at any time since that anything we did was not consensual. We went on to record a song and perform together, and I was always respectful and supportive of Melissa both personally and professionally. 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.”
In an additional tweet Tuesday, Schuman thanked her followers for "the outpouring of love and support" for her blog post.
"Thank you for bearing witness to my story," she tweeted. "Thank you for providing me a safe place to be open and vulnerable. I love you all. Thank you for aiding me in the healing that I so desperately needed. I am free now."
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