Sharna Burgess Defends Former ‘DWTS’ Partner Nick Carter After Sexual Assault Allegations

Sharna Burgess took to Twitter on Saturday, December 2, to defend her former Dancing With the Stars partner Nick Carter after he was accused of sexual assault.

The Australian pro dancer, 32, shared two videos to “shed a little bit of love and positivity” in wake of the allegations, which were made by singer Melissa Schuman. The former Dream member, 33, claimed in a November 18 blog post that the Backstreet Boys singer, 37, sexually assaulted her about 15 years ago at his apartment. He later denied the accusations in a statement to Us Weekly, claiming that Schuman “never expressed … that anything we did was not consensual.”

Sharna Burgess defends Nick Carter
Sharna Burgess and Nick Carter during ‘Dancing With the Stars’ season 21 at CBS Television City in Los Angeles November 9, 2015. David Livingston/Getty Images

Burgess began her first video by stating that she was not “victim-shaming,” but rather showing her support for Carter, with whom she finished in second place on season 21 of DWTS in 2015. “Nick was definitely one of the most respectful guys that I’ve ever danced with on the show,” she said. “So understanding of the difference between the character and the dance, and then the coach and the dance, all of the different levels of relationships that we have with our partners on the show.”

“From day one, he was just incredibly sweet and understanding of what it was that we had to do,” the choreographer continued. “He was very accepting of me bossing him around every day. … But what I loved about Nick, too, was that he always took ownership of the things that he’d been through — the darkness in his history, the mistakes that he’s made — he wanted to be very open about them and how he felt about them.”

Burgess went on to explain that the “Shape of My Heart” crooner was always equally respectful with the DWTS crew, producers and dancers. “No one got more attention than the other,” she said. “Not once did he ever speak to anybody badly, demand anything, become a diva, show anything ugly other than just absolute gratitude for being there, for having made it that far, and just a passion for working hard and trying to do better.”

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