Earlier this month Jared Drake Bell, a.k.a Drake from the 2004-2007 Nickelodean series “Drake and Josh,” pleaded not guilty to child endangerment charges. As of now, he has changed his tune. On Wednesday (June 23) Bell pleaded guilty to two crimes involving a minor during a virtual pretrial hearing.
Bell, 34, was charged in Cuyahoga County, Ohio in the beginning of June with attempted endangerment of children and disseminating matter harmful to children. During a Cuyahoga County Court appearance on June 3 he entered a not guilty plea and agreed not to contact the alleged victim.
The incident involving Drake Bell and the underaged victim occurred Dec. 1, 2017 when he had a concert in Cleveland, Ohio. Although the two connected for the concert, Bell and the victim had “developed a relationship” online prior to the concert, as noted by Yahoo!
Bell’s attempted endangering children charge “ relates to that event where Bell “violated his duty of care” and created a risk of harm to the victim,” according to Yahoo! Additionally, Bell being charged with disseminating harmful material to children is related to the “inappropriate social media messages Bell sent,” according to Yahoo!
The victim will have an opportunity to give a visual impact statement at Bell’s sentencing on July 12, however it’s uncertain if she is going to. Since Bell has pleaded guilty he is now facing up to two years in prison.
In Ohio, attempted child endangerment is felony and carries a maximum sentence of six to 18 months in prison and/or a fine up to $5,000. Disseminating matter harmful to juveniles carries a sentence of six months in county jail and/or a fine up to $1,000.
It is unclear why Bell pleaded guilty, however Bell’s defense attorney told the Associated Press that, “why Mr. Bell chose to enter today’s plea” will be revealed at sentencing. Maybe it was Bell’s guilty conscious…