Usher‘s legal issues continue to stack up. After being hit with a $20 million lawsuit for reportedly giving a woman herpes, the singer will now face three more lawsuits from victims who claim that he exposed them to the STD without warning. Two of these victims are women, and one, according to TMZ, is a man.
The latter reveal has come as quite a shock to Usher fans, causing many to wonder whether the singer could possibly be gay or bisexual. The identity of the man in question is currently unknown, and is being referred to as ‘John Doe’ in court documents.
That being said, this isn’t the first time rumors of Usher’s sexuality have made their way into the media.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. He & John Doe Allegedly Had Sexual Contact Between 2012-13
The news of these latest lawsuits broke on Friday, when attorney Lisa Bloom posted an official statement on her Twitter account. “On Monday, August 7,” she writes, “Attorney Lisa Bloom will file a California lawsuit on behalf of these three individuals, all of whom allege that Usher had sexual contact with them after 2012, and failed to warn them of his alleged STD, as required by law.”
Bloom goes on to state that Usher had vaginal sex with at least one of the female accusers, and oral sex with the male accuser. TMZ reports that they were with Usher “because Raymond was a revered celebrity in their eyes who they believed could be loved and trusted.” The identity of the male, John Doe, will “remain private.”
Whether John Doe’s identity will come to light after the lawsuit remains to be seen. Usher has not responded to these allegations.
2. His Ex-Wife Tameka Foster Hinted At His Sexuality on Twitter in 2011
Tameka Foster, who was married to Usher from 2007 to 2009, turned heads in 2011 when she tweeted out that gay men who look and act straight should identify themselves with “bright wristbands.” The Huffington Post reports that the tweet (which has since been deleted) received ample backlash from the LGBTQ community, while others speculated that Foster could be alluding to her ex-husband.
Foster’s close friend Nyeisha Dewitt told Us magazine that the tweet was simply the result of Foster airing out her frustrations over her messy divorce. “I don’t know what role that played in it,” she said, “But I just know that it’s very difficult sometimes when you are in that situation to overlook some of the insanity that’s going on outside of the relationship and the pressure that it imposes within the relationship.”
Dewitt also addressed the subliminal dig that Foster took at Usher’s sexuality, and dispelled it outright. gay. “No way — I believe unequivocally that he is a straight man,” she states, “That’s never been an issue.”
3. Other Hollywood Celebrities Have Questioned His Sexuality
Usher’s sexuality has also been brought into question by a number of celebrities, including his former collaborator Sean “Diddy” Combs. In an interview with Kevin Hart in 2012, Diddy infamously mentioned his early years with Usher: “We used to wake up together… I mean damn, pause” leading some fans to theorize that two had been sexually involved at one point.
Scrub to the 0:35 second mark below to hear Diddy’s comments.
Jenny McCarthy added to this rumor mill in 2013, when The Huffington Post asked her if she found Usher attractive. “Is he for sure straight? Is he Bi?” McCarthy asked, “I think he’s hot. I would definitely be interested. I would have that unsure flag of which team he plays for, for real.”
When asked why she found Usher’s “team” difficult to determine, the Playboy model added “Guys that are really well kept like that, and aren’t really with that many chicks, I tend to have a question mark.”
On Friday, Twitter user @CreoleCanadian posted a series of tweets where he wrote that he “wasn’t surprised” by the news of a man suing Usher. He claims that he worked alongside the singer during an Atlanta concert in 2006, and his behavior with the staff indicated that there was more to him beyond his ladykiller persona. @CreoleCanadian’s story has not been proved, but when his account becomes visible (it is currently set to private) you can read it here.
4. He’s Said That ‘Bisexuals Are the Best to Be Friends With’
While promoting the single “Lil Freak” in 2010, Usher discussed the benefits of hanging out with bisexuals in his personal life. “I mean, I wrote about it,” Usher told MTV when asked if he’s participated in group activity. “It happens in this day and time.” The singer went on to say that bisexuals are the best “to be friends with, honestly.”
In the music video for “Lil Freak” (watch above), Usher and Nicki Minaj is depicted alongside several bisexual women.
Usher also alluded to bisexual relationships when discussing his marriage with MTV News in 2008, saying “It can never be bad to have a foundation as a man — a black man — in a time when women are dying for men. Women have started to become lovers of each other as a result of not having enough men,” he explained, before going on to assert that “Black love is a good thing.”
5. He Has Never Addressed These Rumors Publicly
While the rumors continue to persist, the fact remains that there is little proof to support them. Usher has never publicly spoken on his sexuality, but he has been very vocal when it comes to the relationships he’s made public for the past two decades. He dated Rozanda ‘Chilli’ Thomas of TLC from 2001 to 2003, and model Naomi Campbell for a brief time in 2004, before marrying for the first time, to Foster, in 2007.
Since 2015, Usher has been married to music executive Grace Miguel. In an interview with Billboard, the singer spoke on their happy relationship:
I have an incredible partner and manager. She has helped me through some of the hardest times in my life and my career. She’s someone who’s been able to support and understand all of who I am. Not just as a dancer or as a performer or as a singer, but as a humanitarian and a business man and as a person.
According to TMZ, Miguel isn’t giving these lawsuits or allegations any weight, and will continue to stay by Usher’s side. To learn more about the couple, click below.