Kenneth Petty assaulted Hough in 1994 when they were both teenagers. Petty spent time behind bars for the attack. Petty was convicted on one count of attempted rape in the first degree, assault in the second degree, unlawful imprisonment in the second degree and criminal possession of a weapon. He was also required to register as a sex offender.
Petty is still included in the lawsuit. Hough’s lawyers voluntarily dismissed their claims against Minaj “without prejudice.”
Hough filed the lawsuit in federal court in August 2021. The lawsuit alleged a pattern of harassment by both Minaj and Petty. Minaj’s lawyer, Judd Bernstein, wrote to Hough’s lawyer, Tyrone Blackburn, that he was pleased that they “came to their senses.”
“Your conduct in pursuing this case against Nicki represents the worst of our legal system: bottom-feeding lawyers who pursue frivolous actions against a celebrity assuming that they will be paid off if they throw up enough dirt,” he wrote in an email obtained by PEOPLE.
Bernstein says that Minaj plans to take legal action against Hough and Blackburn.
Bernstein added, “It is just the beginning of Nicki’s and my efforts to make you pay for your disgraceful conduct with both money and, if the Court recommends it, disciplinary sanctions.”
The megastar’s attorney also spoke to Vulture:
“What they tried to do to Nicki was disgraceful. They finally realized that they had to surrender without Nicki paying a penny. And now, Nicki and I are going to make them pay for this in the courts.”
“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 said. “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.”
Hough is suing for $500,000.