Nick Carter supported by Backstreet Boys in first pics since rape allegation

THE Backstreet Boys banded together to support Nick Carter as he stepped out to face the music after he was accused of raping a fan.

The American singer, 42, has been accused of sexually assaulting a disabled teenager on a tour bus in 2001.

The Backstreet Boys showed their support for Nick Carter after he was accused of raping a disabled teen fan

The Backstreet Boys showed their support for Nick Carter after he was accused of raping a disabled teen fanCredit: The Mega Agency
The singer, 42, waved to onlookers in New York amid the controversy

The singer, 42, waved to onlookers in New York amid the controversyCredit: The Mega Agency
He performed with the boys at the Jingle Ball 2022 in Detroit on December 6

He performed with the boys at the Jingle Ball 2022 in Detroit on December 6Credit: Getty

Despite his band’s Christmas special TV show being axed in wake of the claims, the fivesome put on a united front for fans in New York.

Carter was pictured seemingly in high spirits as he waved at onlookers in his first appearance since the allegations emerged.

Kevin Richardson, AJ McLean, Brian Littrell and Howie Dorough showed their support for the singer by posing for cosy pictures.

The 42-year-old appreciatively placed an arm around the shoulders of Kevin and AJ as he grinned at the camera.

The boys chatted with fans outside the Empire State Building in the Big Apple on Thursday, shortly after their festive show was scrapped.

They brushed off the blow from ABC, despite A Very Backstreet Christmas being due to air on December 14.

It was set to feature the group’s songs from their latest album of the same name, while a host of stars joined in with the festivities.

Seth Rogen, Meghan Trainor, Nikki Glaser, Rob Riggle, Ron Funches and Atsuko Okatsuka were set to appear on the Christmas special.

The broadcaster pulled the plug on the band‘s TV comeback after Shannon ‘Shay’ Ruth announced she was suing Carter for sexual battery.

The 39-year-old woman claims the star left bruises on her body during the incident on his tour bus when she was a teen.

Ruth, who is autistic and has cerebral palsy, announced her legal battle during a press conference streamed over Facebook this week.

Supported by her attorneys, she tearfully alleged that Carter, then 20, sexually assaulted her on his tour bus when she was 17 after a Backstreet Boys gig in Tacoma, Washington.

She claims she was invited onto the bus after the singer spotted her waiting for an autograph before he allegedly exposed himself.

Ruth alleged the now 42-year-old then forced her to perform oral sex on him before raping her.

She claimed: “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 than what Nick Carter did and said to me.

“Carter tried to scare me into silence… he was nasty and threatening.”

She also claimed the star left “bruises on my arm”.

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.

Shannon Ruth

Wiping away tears, she added: “I felt like I had nowhere to turn, no way to express my emotion.

“And I truly believe that if I’d told anyone I’d go to jail. I struggled with blaming myself because I got on the bus with Nick.

“My motivation with coming forward and filing this lawsuit is to stop Nick Carter from assaulting more teens and women.”

She said she “knows” other women have similar stories and her hope is to “hold Nick Carter accountable”.

Ruth’s attorney also spoke to support his client and claimed there are three other women involved – identified only as Jane Doe.

But Carter’s attorney dismissed the allegations as “entirely untrue” and “a press stunt orchestrated by an opportunistic lawyer”.

He said in a statement: “This claim about an incident that supposedly took place more than 20 years ago is not only legally meritless but also entirely untrue.

“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.”

Carter has not made a public statement regarding the allegations at this time.

‘VIP JUICE’

According to court documents, Ruth claims Carter offered her a drink to which she responded by requesting apple juice.

He allegedly told her he had cranberry juice and handed her a “red-colored drink” that he is said to have dubbed “VIP juice.”

Ruth said the drink tasted wrong but she drank it even though she was underage and didn’t want to – and now says she suspects it was a mix of alcohol and cranberry juice.

Carter, she claimed, then took her to the bus’ bathroom and ordered her to perform oral sex on him.

She claimed she was crying during the ordeal, but he kept going.

She then described how Carter took her to a bed on the bus and continued to assault her, and after the incident, she allegedly said she’d tell people what he did.

The documents claim he told her no one would believe her while calling her a “r******d little b***h.”

The alleged victim – who was a virgin at the time according to the lawsuit – says she contracted HPV after the incident and is seeking monetary damages.

In 2017, Melissa Schuman, a former member of girl band Dream, claimed Carter sexually assaulted when she was 18 and he was 22.

He acknowledged they had sexual relations but that they were consensual and has never been charged for such crimes.

Carter’s younger brother Aaron tragically died last month aged 34.

Shannon 'Shay' Ruth claims the star raped her on his tour bus in 2001

Shannon ‘Shay’ Ruth claims the star raped her on his tour bus in 2001Credit: The Mega Agency
The Backstreet Boy's ABC Christmas special was axed in wake of the allegations

The Backstreet Boy’s ABC Christmas special was axed in wake of the allegationsCredit: Twitter/ABC/Hulu/Disney
Carter's legal team have strongly denied the claims, insisting they are fabricated

Carter’s legal team have strongly denied the claims, insisting they are fabricatedCredit: Getty