After former member of the teen-pop group Dream Melissa Schuman wrote a blog post earlier this month saying Backstreet Boy Nick Carter raped her in the early 2000s when she was 18 and he was 22, she says now she has forgiven him and only wishes him the best.
In a preview of Friday’s episode of The Dr. Oz Show, Schuman is asked what she would say to Carter if given the chance. “That I forgive you,” she replied.
She continued, “I don’t want anything from you. I wish you only the best. I don’t want your money. I didn’t do this to hurt you or your family. I did this for me because I needed this healing and I also came forward because I want to inspire other victims, other people who have been assaulted to come forward and know that they have a voice.”
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In Schuman’s original post shared on her personal blog, she wrote that after her and Carter were cast in the same made-for-TV movie, she went with her roommate to hang out at his Santa Monica apartment where she said he sexually assaulted her. She continued to describe confiding to her manager what had happened with the intent of pursuing legal action but was told that Carter had “the most powerful litigator in the country.” Schuman, fearful for her career and public reputation, said she “didn’t want what he did to further affect my life and future,” ultimately declining to pursue charges.
Speaking with Dr. Oz, Schuman restated her reasoning for not moving forward with pressing charges at the time.
“I’d actually confided in my manager at that time about pressing charges,” she said. “And I was told that [Carter] had the most powerful litigator in the country and that I didn’t have the money to pay for an attorney to essentially defend me, if he were to come after me. And then he was also just like, ‘You know you’re trying to build a name for yourself right now, everyone’s going to call you fame hungry, that you’re trying to use this to better yourself or get your name out there and at this point there’s nothing we can do,’ And I remember telling him, ‘Oh, so that’s it? He just gets away with it?'”
Following Schuman’s blog post, Carter issued a statement saying he was “shocked and saddened” by her “accusations.” He 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.”
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