Shannon “Shay” Ruth, a 39-year-old woman, filed a sexual battery lawsuit on Thursday alleging that Backstreet Boys singer Nick Carter raped her when she was just 17. “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 at a press conference with her attorney.
According to Rolling Stone, the civil suit details Ruth’s disturbing account of assault that she alleges began when Carter, then 21, picked her out of a line of fans asking for autographs outside of Washington’s Tacoma Dome in 2001. Carter, who was then on a worldwide tour with the Backstreet Boys, invited her to join him on the boy band’s tour bus.
Ruth, who news outlets have noted is autistic and has been diagnosed with cerebral palsy, claims that once she joined Carter on the bus, he plied her with a pink drink he called “VIP juice.” The drink, she now thinks, was a mix of cranberry juice and some kind of alcohol. Carter then led Ruth to the bathroom on the bus, instructed her to get on her knees, and forced her to perform oral sex, she alleges. Though she was crying, Carter insisted she keep going.
Ruth claims Carter’s assault continued as he “pushed” her onto a bed and forcibly removed her pants before attempting to perform oral sex on her as she begged him to stop. Until then, she says, she had never had sex.
“Carter told her to ‘Shh!’ as he laid on top of her and said it would be our ‘special secret,’” the filing states. He then allegedly vaginally penetrated her.
“Even though I’m autistic and live with cerebral palsy, I believe nothing has affected me more…than what Nick Carter did to me,” Ruth told reporters at the press conference. She also alleges that Carter threatened her into silence when she said she planned to report the rape.
“After he raped me, I remember him calling me a ‘retarded bitch’ and grabbing me and leaving bruises on my arm,” she said. Ruth also recalled Carter saying that “he’d turn people against me, because he was Nick Carter and had the power to wreck my life.”
Three other Jane Does who’ve alleged similar assaults by Carter are also included in the suit. The second Jane Doe notes she was just 15 at the time of the alleged assault in 2003 and that afterward, she discovered Carter had given her HPV. Ruth echoed that claim. The women are seeking monetary and punitive damages in an amount to be determined at trial. Representatives for Carter did not respond to a request for comment from RS, but did tell TMZ that the accusation was, “categorically false.”