The ex-girlfriend of Stephen Belafonte has come to Mel B.'s defense in her bitter divorce battle, and believes what the former Spice Girl is claiming about her former flame.
In a lawsuit, Mel B., whose real name is Melanie Brown, says Belafonte "beat" her and forced her to take part in threesomes "with random women," allegations that he denies as “false” and “outrageous.”
Nicole Contreras, a relator featured on the HGTV show, Selling L.A., was a 25-year-old swimsuit model when she met Belafonte in 2000.
She is mother of Belafonte's 12-year-old daughter Giselle
“In the beginning it was very exciting — we were on top of the world," she told Inside Edition. "He was unstoppable, loveable, [a] charmer."
But she claims: "He was violent more towards the end of our relationship. He grabbed my phone and smashed it and threw my up against a wall and had me pinned against a wall. I was very fearful. I get the chills talking about it now.”
Belafonte was arrested for "domestic battery" in 2001, according to court documents, and he pleaded no contest. He was later ordered to attend anger management classes.
Contreras' says her experience echoes what Mel B claims in court papers, including claims that Belafonte: "placed both of his hands around my neck and began choking me. He then slammed me down onto the hardwood floor."
Belafonte’s ex said “a lot” of what the America’s Got Talent judge alleges against him sounded familiar, “especially the part about him verbally abusing her and the controlling issues.”
She added that, “Fortunately, the threesomes [and] sex things never happened.”
Stephen Belafonte’s real name was Stephen Stansbury and his ex said she “didn’t know that until many years later.”
She said she believes he selected the name because “I would assume because of his appearance to Harry Belafonte.”
Contreras claims that it wasn't until years later that she learned his real last name wasn't really Belafonte.
Mel B also claims Belafonte had an affair with their nanny — 26-year-old Lorraine Gilles — and that he got her pregnant. Belafonte and the nanny denies those claims and the nanny has sued Mel B. for defamation.
“I remember when I saw her, I thought, ‘Wow,’” she admitted. “I even made a comment to my friend: ‘You should see their nanny — she's a knockout.’ I wouldn’t consider hiring a nanny like that.”
Contreras says she left Belafonte after giving birth to their daughter and it wasn't long before she found out he had moved on with Mel B.
“I was very selfishly happy," she said. "I thought, 'Perfect! Here’s this woman, she's financially stable. He'll move into her world and get out of ours.'"
Contreras added that she did feel some guilt that she didn’t call Mel B. at the beginning of her relationship with Belafonte.
“I do feel some guilt, but I don’t know if she would have listened,” she said.
Belafonte is now claiming that Contreras tried to extort him for up to $1 million to stay quiet. She denies the allegations.