The Backstreet Boys’ Christmas special has been axed after Nick Carter was accused of raping an autistic girl in 2001.
‘A Very Backstreet Holiday’ was pulled by ABC’s December 14 schedule following Shannon ‘Shay’ Ruth’s bombshell claims yesterday.
The 39-year-old, who also has cerebral palsy, alleges the singer, 42, raped her on a tour bus during the band’s tour in Washington state 21 years ago.
She broke down in tears during an emotional press conference yesterday, claiming he also took her virginity and gave her a sexually transmitted disease.
Carter furiously denied the claims last night, saying they were ‘meritless’ and ‘entirely untrue’ – claiming the move was a ‘press stunt’.
It is the latest blow for the singer, who lost his younger brother Aaron on November 5 when he was found dead aged 34 in his bathtub in Lancaster, California.
The Backstreet Boys’ Christmas special has been axed after Nick Carter was accused of raping an autistic girl in 2001
A sobbing Ruth detailed her ‘pain, confusion, frustration, shame and self-harm’ brought on by the alleged rape and claimed Carter ‘threatened and tried to silence her’ in the immediate aftermath (the singer is pictured in 2001)
It comes after Nick’s brother Aaron Carter was found dead aged 34 in his bathtub in Lancaster, California on November 5 (pictured in his final interview)
‘A Very Backstreet Holiday’ had been set to air on December 14 after filming this month in Los Angeles.
It was set to feature Carter, AJ McLean, Kevin Richardson, Brian Littrell and Howie Dorough performing hits from their 10th album, A Very Backstreet Christmas.
Celebrities set to appear on the special were Seth Rogen, Meghan Trainor, Nikki Glaser, Rob Riggle, Ron Funches and Atsuko Okatsuka.
But Variety confirmed last night the show was scrapped by executives following the allegations against Carter.
In her lawsuit, Shannon ‘Shay’ Ruth, now 39 and living in Clark County, Nevada, who has autism and cerebral palsy, claims the Backstreet Boys singer invited her onto his tour bus when she was 17.
It came after the band’s concert in Tacoma, Washington, in February 2001 after he allegedly spotted her waiting in the autograph line.
Ruth claims the star pulled down his trousers and exposed himself to her in a bathroom – before allegedly forcing her to perform oral sex and then raping her.
She detailed the ‘pain, confusion, frustration, shame and self-harm’ brought on by the alleged incident and claimed Carter ‘threatened and tried to silence her’.
The singer, 42, has denied the claims and was joined by his band Backstreet Boys as they chatted with fans outside the Empire State Building in New York City on Thursday
Nick Carter, Aj Mclean, Howie Dorough, Brian Littrell and Kevin Richardson of the ‘Backstreet Boys’ are pictured yesterday
A sobbing Ruth (pictured centre) claims the star forced her to perform oral sex on him before allegedly raping her
Ruth (pictured centre) – who alleges Carter raped her on a tour bus in 2001 when she was a minor aged 17 – sobbed during a press conference on Thursday announcing her lawsuit against the star
Carter is pictured in September 2001 – seven months after the alleged rape
Ruth’s attorney Mark J. Boskovich said three other women – named only as Jane Doe – are named in a joint lawsuit alongside Ruth.
According to court documents obtained by TMZ, Ruth alleges Carter asked if she wanted a drink.
But after requesting apple juice, she claims he offered her cranberry and gave her a ‘red colored’ drunk which he called ‘VIP juice’.
Ruth claims the drink tasted ‘off’ as she drank it and says she believes it was a mix of cranberry juice and alcohol.
She claimed he took her to the bus bathroom and ordered her to perform oral sex. Ruth alleges she was crying throughout but Carter ‘kept instructing her.’
Ruth further claims Carter then took her to a bed on the bus and and continued his alleged sexual assault.
She claims afterwards she told Carter she would tell people about the alleged assault – but he threatened to turn people against her, allegedly calling her a ‘r******* little b***h that no one would believe.’
She said: ‘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.
‘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.
She alleged: ‘After he raped me, I remember him calling me a r******* little b***h and grabbing me and leaving bruises on my arm.
She added: ‘Carter tried to scare me into silence … he was nasty and threatening.
‘He told people he would turn people against me and because he was Nick Carter, he had the power to wreck my life.’
The Backstreet Boys Christmas special that was filmed this month in Los Angeles has been cancelled, following rape allegations against Nick Carter; The band pictured 2022
Past claim: In 2017 singer Melissa Schuman accused Nick of raping her in 2003 – he denied the claims and has never been charged with any crimes (pictured 2018)
She said she was motivated to speak out to ‘stop’ Carter from ‘assaulting more teens and women.’
Ruth claims she contracted sexual transmitted infection, Human papillomavirus infection (HPV) from the alleged assault, having been a virgin beforehand.
She is now seeking damages. She said: ‘Just because Nick Carter is a celebrity does not mean that he is excused from his crimes,. I am a survivor and always will be.
He said: ‘Nick Carter has a long history of abusing women’ and added adding that the music industry has allegedly ‘looked away’ in the past.
He said: ‘Shay is determined to bring Carter to justice. She believes it’s worth it to protect other women.’
A source close to Nick has denied the allegations and told TMZ: ‘This accusation is categorically false, Nick is focusing on his family and mourning the death of his brother.’
Carter’s attorney Michael Holtz called the allegations ‘entirely untrue’ in a statement to DailyMail.com Thursday.
He said: ‘This claim about an incident that supposedly took place more than 20 years ago is not only legally meritless but also entirely untrue.’
Holtz said ‘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.’
He added: ‘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.’
A source close to Nick has denied the allegations and told the publication: ‘This accusation is categorically false, Nick is focusing on his family and mourning the death of his brother (pictured 2001)
The special was set to air on ABC on December 14, and feature Carter (second from left) AJ McLean, Kevin Richardson, Brian Littrell and Howie Dorough, but Variety confirmed that it’s been axed; The group pictured in 2001
Carter remained silent on the allegations but shared a post promoting a charity concert for Aaron on Thursday – hours before the claims came to light.
He has previously faced rape allegations – which he has denied – and has never been charged with any crimes.
In 2017 singer Melissa Schuman alleged that the boy bander allegedly raped her in 2003.
In 2018 the LA County District Attorney’s office announced it would not press charges against Carter due to the statute of limitations, which expired in 2013.
Melissa, who is from the 90s girl group named Dream, had filed the police report in February that year.
She claimed in 2003 Nick had pushed her in a bathroom for forced oral sex and then claimed she was raped in the bedroom. Nick has denied allegations of rape.
Later the Backstreet Boys star said in a statement he was ‘shocked and saddened’ about the accusations.
He said: ‘Melissa never expressed to me while we were together or at any time since that anything we did was not consensual.’
Nick added he ‘was always respectful and supportive of Melissa both personally and professionally.’
He concluded in the statement ‘this is the first time 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 continued, noting that they ‘went on to record a song and perform together.’ Melissa originally made the allegations in a November blog post.
She claimed she was ‘forced to engage in an act against my will’ by Nick, who allegedly took her virginity when she was 18 and he was 22.
It is the latest blow for Carter, following the death of his younger brother Aaron last month when he was found dead in his bathtub aged 34.
No cause of death has been officially declared, but he was known to have struggled with mental health problems and addictions.
Nick Carter has thus far remained silent on the allegations – but shared a post promoting a charity concert for Aaron on Thursday – hours before the claims came to light
Aaron Carter’s twin sister Angel announces charity concert with brother Nick Carter and Lance Bass in late star’s memory as she marks their 35th birthdays
Aaron Carter’s twin sister Angel has announced a charity concert will be held in his memory next year – in a poignant post marking the pair’s 35th birthdays on Wednesday.
The singer was found dead aged 34 in his bathtub in Lancaster, California on November 5. No cause of death has been officially declared, but he was known to have struggled with mental health problems and addictions.
Angel – who Aaron was estranged from at the time of his death, revealed benefit concert, Songs For Tomorrow – featuring Nick Carter, 42, and N*Sync’s Lance Bass, 43, will be held on January 18 2023, in aid of On Our Sleeves: The Movement for Children’s Mental Health.
Sharing a throwback snap of herself and Aaron as young children, she wrote: ‘I want to start by sharing how much I appreciate all the birthday wishes. While today is incredibly tough, I am overwhelmed by your love and support… thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Tragic loss: Aaron Carter’s twin sister Angel has announced a charity concert featuring Nick Carter will be held in his memory next year – in a poignant post marking the pair’s 35th birthdays on Wednesday (pictured Aaron, Angel and Nick in 2006)
‘Almost 11 years ago, I lost my sister, Leslie. I remember feeling broken, confused, and I questioned how I was going to continue on without her in my life… And now, over a decade later, I am forced to once again deal with the extreme grief of the death of a sibling.
‘This time, it’s my beloved twin, Aaron. We had an indescribable bond… and now… he is gone.
‘It feels unfair… I feel too young to carry the weight of losing two of my siblings. When we lost Leslie, I was blindsided and shocked.
Angel detailed her final call with Aaron two days before his death, in which she had begged him to seek help for his addiction issues.
Tribute: Angel – who Aaron was estranged from at the time of his death, revealed benefit concert, Songs For Tomorrow – featuring Nick Carter, 42, and N*Sync’s Lance Bass, 43, will be held on January 18 2023, in aid of On Our Sleeves
Support: Nick sent birthday wishes to his beloved sister
She continued: ‘With Aaron, however, we had tried everything. In fact, I spoke with him two days before he passed, and I begged, once again, for him to let us help.
‘I did not know that would be the last time that I would ever hear his voice. And now, I sit here on our birthday, trying to navigate this unimaginable loss because of untreated mental illness and the addiction that it led to.
‘Aaron dying was the worst day of my life. I have loved him since we were born… it feels like a piece of my soul is gone. And yet, despite all this pain, his passing has lit a fire within me.
Performance: Lance Bass will performing at the concert for Aaron
‘I feel a calling and responsibility to help other families and continue the conversation to further break the stigmas that surround mental illness.
‘And so, with the support of family and friends, we are planning a benefit concert to raise awareness for mental health, with 100% of proceeds being donated to
‘I have learned the pain never goes away and keep telling myself that it is one step at a time. I am hoping you can join me for this crucial next step… in memory of Aaron.
Leslie, one of the brothers’ three sisters, died in 2012 from a drug overdose.
Tragic loss: Angel, who is currently in possession of his ashes, has filed to be the administrator of his estate (pictured together in 2006)
In the days immediately preceding Aaron’s death Nick and Angel launched a fundraiser for On Our Sleeves.
Aaron, who rose to fame as a child star, battled mental health conditions including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and manic depression during his lifetime, with his siblings urging fans to donate in his memory.
A representative for the Backstreet Boys singer told DailyMail.com: ‘For fans looking to pay tribute to the life of Aaron Carter, a donation page has been established in lieu of flowers that will benefit On Our Sleeves: The Movement for Children’s Mental Health, an organization that Nick Carter has long supported and serves as an Ambassador for.
‘On Our Sleeves is on a mission to provide every community in America access to free, evidenced-informed educational resources necessary for breaking stigmas about child mental health as well as educating families and advocates.
‘Gifts fund educational content, lesson plans for schools and activities for schools and organizations. By honoring Aaron, you help Nick, Angel, and their family’s commitment of helping others.’
Aaron previously accused Nick of trying to put him under a conservatorship, similar to the one placed on Britney Spears.
In 2019 Nick filed a restraining order against Aaron, alleging he threatened to kill his pregnant wife and unborn child.
‘After careful consideration, my sister Angel and I regret that we were required to seek a restraining order against our brother Aaron today,’ Nick wrote at the time. ‘We were left with no choice, but to take every measure possible to protect ourselves and our family.’
Baby mine: His one-year-old son Prince, whom he shared with his fiancée Melanie Martin, has been named in Angel’s filing as a prospective beneficiary of his assets
He added that he still loved Aaron and hope he would get ‘the proper treatment he needs before any harm comes to himself or anyone else.’
Angel took to Instagram to post a heartfelt tribute to her brother after his death.
She said: ‘I loved you beyond measure.. You will be missed dearly. My funny, sweet Aaron, I have so many memories of you and I, and I promise to cherish them.
‘I know you’re at peace now. I will carry you with me until the day I die and get to see you again.
Carter, who opened for the Backstreet Boys on a 1997 tour, shot to fame in the 90s releasing four studio albums, starting with his self-titled debut album in 1997 when he was only 9 years old.
In 2019, Aaron revealed on ‘The Doctors’ that he was diagnosed with ‘multiple personality disorder, schizophrenia, acute anxiety and manic depression,’ according to CNN.
The singer grew up in the shadow of Nick’s world-conquering boy band but released his first record in 1997 at the age of just nine, on the same label that led his brother to stardom, Jive.
Concern: Aaron’s manager Taylor Helgeson previously told the publication Carter looked ‘thin, tired and physically frail’ in the final days before his tragic death (pictured earlier this year)
His second album, ‘Aaron’s Party (Come Get It),’ went triple platinum upon it’s 2000 release and spawned multiple charting singles, including a video for ‘That’s How I Beat Shaq’ in which the singer went 1-on-1 with NBA great Shaquille O’Neal.
However, after 2001’s ‘Oh Aaron’ sold over a million copies in the US alone, the singer failed to have the staying power that his brother’s group did.
He released one more album of original songs in 2002 before going 16 years without making any new music.
Like many young music stars, Carter also pursued some acting, appearing in several Disney Channel sitcoms.
He would go on to make a few appearances in motion pictures, including Fat Albert and Ella Enchanted, but his film career would sputter out, much like his singing career.
He also appeared on a reality show with his brother and three other siblings, E!’s House of Carters, in 2006.
Aaron reappeared in the public eye in 2009, finishing in fifth place on the ninth season of Dancing with the Stars.
By 2011, the former child star had ended up in rehab at the Betty Ford Center in California. At the end of the year, he returned to the stage, even appearing in an off-Broadway musical.
According to Fox News, Aaron was arrested in Texas in 2008 for speeding and was found to have marijuana in his vehicle.
He was again arrested for driving under the influence in 2017 and reckless driving in 2021.
He also had a turbulent romantic life. He was engaged to Playboy model Keri Anne Peniche before breaking it off.
In 2019, he was granted a restraining order against then-girlfriend Lina Valentina, who allegedly threatened to stab him.
Melanie Martin, his girlfriend at the time of his death, was arrested after an alleged domestic violence incident in which Carter was purported to be the victim.
In the late 2010s, Aaron attempted a comeback in several different avenues.
He released a record in 2018 and started releasing rap music under the moniker Kid Carter.
In 2020, Aaron began posting on the content site OnlyFans, charging up to $100 and by 2021, he was facing off with the likes of Lamar Odom in a celebrity boxing match. He lost on a second round knockout.
Later that year, he lost out on a role in the Las Vegas show Naked Boys Singing because he’d refused to take the COVID-19 vaccine.
His problems with family continued that year, saying that Nick had tried to put him under a conservatorship, according to TMZ.
The late teen idol is survived by his 11-month-old son Prince, whom he shared with ex-fiancée Melanie Martin. It has recently been reported that Aaron died without leaving a will.
Aaron had split from fiancée Martin just one week after they welcomed their first child together.
Aaron’s estate will go to his one-year-old son Prince, and the singer’s family wants to make sure the boy is taken care of.
As he left no will, California law stipulates that the singer’s, which are estimated to be about $550 thousand dollars in real estate and personal property, go to the next of kin, and since Aaron wasn’t married, the inheritance goes to Prince.
Angel has applied to be the administrator.