Ex-Nickelodeon star Drake Bell pleads guilty to a felony for attempting to endanger a child

Drake Bell at the world premiere of 'The Spy Who Dumped Me' in 2018
Drake Bell has pleaded guilty in a child endangerment case. Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP
  • Drake Bell, the former star of the Nickelodeon show “Drake & Josh,” pleaded guilty to two charges at an Ohio hearing Wednesday.
  • One was for attempted child endangerment and the other for disseminating matter harmful to juveniles.
  • The charges stem from a 2017 incident involving a 15-year-old girl who attended one of Bell’s concerts in Cleveland.
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Drake Bell, the former star of the Nickelodeon show “Drake & Josh,” pleaded guilty Wednesday to a felony charge of attempted child endangerment at an Ohio hearing.

Bell, whose legal name is Jared Drake Bell, also pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of disseminating matter harmful to juveniles at the hearing via Zoom.

The charges stem from a 2017 incident relating to a 15-year-old girl who attended one of Bell’s concerts in Cleveland.

The 34-year-old actor and musician is due to be sentenced July 12.

The felony charge carries a sentence of between six and 18 months in prison and/or a $5,000 fine, though a judge explained that “prison time is not mandatory.” The misdemeanor charge carries up to six months in county jail and/or a $1,000 fine.

Earlier this month, Bell initially pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Bell’s defense attorney Ian Friedman would not comment on the case Wednesday, but said that it will be made public at sentencing as to why “Mr. Bell chose to enter today’s plea,” The Associated Press reported.

Tyler Sinclair, a spokesperson for the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, has said that the alleged victim in the case filed a complaint with Canadian police in October 2018 and Cleveland police then launched an investigation into the matter, The AP reported.

The prosecutor’s office previously said that Bell and the girl established a relationship online several years before the December 2017 concert.

The charge of attempted child endangerment relates to the concert where Bell “violated his duty of care” and ultimately “created a risk of harm to the victim,” according to The AP.

The other charge relates to Bell sending the girl “inappropriate social media messages” leading up to the concert, the prosecutor’s office has said.

The girl in the case is now an adult and she will have the opportunity to deliver a victim impact statement at Bell’s sentencing, The AP reported.

Bell co-starred on the popular “Drake & Josh” show from 2004 to 2007.