Drake Bell Pleads Guilty: Nickelodeon Star Faces Possible 2 Year Prison Stretch

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Nickelodeon actor Drake Bell has pleaded guilty to attempted to endangering children and disseminating matter harmful to juveniles.

The actor who is known for starring alongside Josh Peck in the children's TV show Drake & Josh pleaded guilty at a hearing, which he appeared via video-link. The charges relate to an incident from December 2017. 

Bell was arrested and charged with attempting to endanger children and disseminating matter harmful to juveniles. 

It was reported that the incident involved a 15 year old girl. 

According to local NBC affiliate KXAN, this incident occurred on the same day that Drake Bell was due to perform at a venue in Cleveland. 

KXAN also reported that Drake Bell was arrested for engaging in inappropriate chat with an underage girl, which was at times sexual in nature. 

Bell's arrest took place almost a year to the day, that his former girlfriend Melissa Lingafelt accused the actor of physical and verbal abuse.

Lingafelt accused Bell of dragging her down the stairs in their home at one point during their relationship, which began in August 2006 and ended in February 2009. Drake Bell has always denied the allegations.  

The Hearing

News 5 Cleveland streamed Drake Bell's hearing in relation to his arrest in 2017 on their website. On it, the judge can be heard addressing Bell. 

"My understanding is there's been a plea agreement reached where the defendant will plead guilty to count one attempted endangering children, a felony in the fourth degree [and] plead guilty to count two: disseminating matter harmful to juveniles, a misdemeanour the first degree", the judge stated. 

The judge continued, "However, if you go to prison, upon your release, you could be subjected to a discretionary period of three years post-release control. Post-release control could involve restrictions on your activities. If you were to violate those restrictions, you can be returned to prison, [for] up to a maximum of one half of your original sentence". 

When asked if he understood the potential penalties, Drake Bell said, "I do, Your Honor. Yes". 

The judge then asked, "Do you understand if you plead guilty that is an admission by you that you did these crimes?"

Bell responded,  "Yes, Your Honor". 

Drake Bell, who was born Jared Bell, pleaded guilty to all charges. 

The judge then told Bell that the first charge carries six to eighteen months in prison in monthly increments and/or a fine of up to $5,000. 

The second charge carries a prison sentence of up to six months and/or a fine of up to $1,000. 

Date Set For Sentence Hearing 

Bell's lawyer, Ian Freidman has issued a statement.

 "All questions about this case will be answered at sentencing, including why Mr. Bell chose to enter his plea". 

The victim in question will be able to read a victim impact statement at Bell's sentencing hearing, if she wishes to do so. 

The date for the sentence hearing has been set for July 12. 



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