Nicki Minaj's Husband Kenneth Petty's Alleged Rape Victim Speaks Out: 'I'm Tired of Being Afraid'
The alleged victim of Nicki Minaj's husband is "tired of being afraid."
In her first televised interview since filing a lawsuit against Minaj and her husband Kenneth Petty with The Real, Jennifer Hough recounted the day she was allegedly raped by Petty and the fear she has faced ever since he married the "Barbie Dreams" rapper, including a seeming death threat. (Hough also shared details of the time Minaj called her personally and Hough told the rapper that what had happened between her and Petty was true.)
"I felt like the actions that were taken in regards to this whole situation, have put me in a different type of fear at my age now," Hough told The Real's co-hosts. "It was wrong. And I don't want to be afraid anymore, so the only way not to be afraid is to continue to speak up."
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As to what she hopes comes from her lawsuit, which asks for $500,000, Hough said she wants the Pettys to know that "they were wrong" and that "you can't do this to people."
"He did something a long time ago and he had consequences that he was supposed to stick with. What they did to me and my family wasn't OK," she said. "It wasn't right and it doesn't matter how much money you have. It doesn't matter what your status is, you can't intimidate people to make things go better for you. And that's what they did."
"I want my daughters to know that as they grow, as they experience life as they come in contact with friends, family, strangers whatever, that they'll have the strength to know that they have a voice, and they should use it. And don't ever let anybody try to silence them," she added.
As she wiped away tears, Hough told the story of the day Petty allegedly led her to a house and raped her when she was 16 years old.
"Before you know it, he was grabbing a hold of my jacket," she said. "I felt something in my back so I just assumed there was a gun. And I started walking. And I'm pleading with him the whole way, trying to understand what he wants."
Hough said they walked up the steps of a house and Petty allegedly told her she "knew what he wanted" as she attempted to fight back.
"All I could do was hold my pants as tight as I can," she said. "I didn't know why it didn't dawn on me to like really fight. I just held on to my pants and he held my arms down and squeezed the sides of my stomach so hard. I let go and as soon as I let go he grabbed my pants. It was like a tug of war and after a while I just got tired."
After he allegedly raped her, "he stood in the mirror and beat his chest. He said, 'I am the man. I'm the man," she said as she wiped away tears.
Hough found a way to escape and ran to school where she informed a security guard of what had happened. The school then called the police and he was taken out of the home in handcuffs and she was transported to the hospital.
Addressing comments from Petty's family that the two were in a relationship at the time, Hough said, "We were never in a relationship. Ever. We never had no type of romantic anything. We never talked on the phone. We never hung out together. I just knew him from the neighborhood."
Hough later explained she was forced to drop the charges to "prevent fear from that house" so on Petty's court date, she said she wanted to drop charges. Petty would go on to plead guilty to first-degree attempted rape, despite being charged with rape. Hough, then, would leave New York completely in fear that Petty and his friends would attack her or her family.
"I don't think I thought about justice per se, because I was still blaming myself. And thought it was something that I did or didn't do," she said while sobbing. "I don't think I thought about if I got justice. I just knew he did what he did and he went to jail and I had to leave my family. I had to leave my home. And I had to move away."
When Hough learned that Minaj and Petty were getting married, Hough said that she was "so afraid of being known as the person [Petty] violated."
"I didn't want that to reflect on my children," she said, before addressing the fact that Minaj claimed the two were in a relationship: "Woman to woman, that was wrong of her," she said. Hough claims that the rapper made her millions of followers "all believe" that she was not raped.
"She called me and she said that she got word that I was willing to help them out in a situation," Hough said of a call she received in March 2020, echoing the allegations in her complaint. "I didn't understand what she was referring to. She offered to fly me and my family to LA. I turned it down. And I told her, woman to woman, this really happened. And I hadn't spoken to her since."
Hough alleges that Minaj and Petty had harassed her by sending people to her family to negotiate a fee for her to recant her story.
"Nicki is the one who personally reached out to me, in regards to helping her, helping them in this situation. And then the threats that I received because I kept saying no to every offer, to every suggestion," she said. "The last incident was when one of their associates put $20,000 dollars on my lap. And I still kept saying no."
If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, please contact the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) or go to rainn.org.