Former child star Drake Bell is in serious legal trouble following a recent arrest in Ohio. On Thursday, the Drake & Josh star appeared in Cuyahoga County court to face charges of attempted endangering children, which is a 4th degree felony, along with an additional charge of disseminating matter harmful to juveniles, a 1st degree misdemeanor. Bell entered a plea of not guilty to the charges, though he had to pose for a new mug shot after his arrest.
Per Fox 8 News, Bell's alleged crimes happened on the evening of Dec. 1, 2017, at a concert where the Nickelodeon star was performing. According to the prosecutor's office, the unnamed 15-year-old victim filed a report with her local police department in Canada in October 2018 regarding the alleged incident. Canadian authorities then contacted Cleveland police, who launched their own investigation into Drake Bell.
Reportedly, investigators allege that Bell established a relationship with the victim several years before the incident. She then attended the Cleveland concert in question where Bell "violated his duty of care and, in doing so, created a risk of harm to the victim." It's also alleged that Bell sent the victim "inappropriate social media messages" in the months leading up to the concert. The exact nature of the messages, along with what specifically happened at the concert, hasn't been revealed.
Bell, whose last two albums The Los Album and Sesiones En Casa were both released last year, appeared in court on June 3 to enter his not guilty plea. He was freed on a $2,500 bond and ordered to have no further contact with the alleged victim. His pretrial hearing has been set for June 23 via Zoom. Fox 8 News reports that Bell is expected to change his plea to no contest or guilty on that date, perhaps in light of what was discovered in the investigation.
Though he's found a lot of success in music, Bell is likely best known for his work as a former child star on Nickelodeon. He appeared with Josh Peck in the popular sitcom Drake & Josh, which aired for four seasons on the network between 2004 and 2007. Serving as sort of Nickelodeon's version of The Odd Couple, it followed two stepbrothers who live together despite having opposite personalities. Bell performed the show's theme song, "I Found a Way," which he co-wrote with Backhouse Mike.
Bell was also known for his starring role in the Nickelodeon sketch comedy show The Amanda Show and starred in a trilogy of The Fairly OddParents movies. He also voiced Peter Parker on the animated series Ultimate Spider-Man on Disney XD. More recently, he appeared on game shows like Safeword and Double Dare, and also appeared in the supernatural musical thriller American Satan with Malcolm McDowell and Denise Richards.
Meanwhile, Bell isn't the only former child star to recently get into trouble with the law. In February, home Improvement actor Zachery Ty Bryan pled guilty to the alleged October 2020 assault of his girlfriend. The news of Bell's arrest comes to us from Fox 8 News.