Drake Bell was sentenced on Monday in an Ohio court room. The star actor faced charges of attempted child endangerment and disseminating matter harmful to juveniles.
Bell is without a doubt best known for playing Drake on the popular Nickelodeon TV show, Drake and Josh. On Monday, he was officially sentenced to two years of probation and 200 hours of community service in California. In addition, he cannot have any contact with the victim. The 35-year-old was facing up to two years in prison.
Bell spoke on the Zoom call prior to receiving his official sentence.
“I accept this plea because my conduct was wrong,” Bell admitted. “I’m sorry the victim was harmed. It was not my intention.”
Victim Speaks in Drake Bell Case
While Bell was giving his brief statement, the victim could be seen crying. The woman, now 19 years old, also accused Bell of sexually assaulting her on two separate occasions when she was 15. She calls him a “pedophile” and the “epitome of evil.” But Bell has denied those allegations through his attorney.
“He was a hero to me,” she said during her 15-minute statement. “Every night I dread going to sleep because I don’t want to see him in my nightmares. He was such a huge part of my childhood, and in return he ruined my life.”
The two had been texting each other for years. As a result, the teenage victim says she was being groomed.
“I was definitely one of his biggest fans,” the woman said. She also allowed her face to appear on-screen during the Zoom call. “I would have done anything for him.”
Bell and His Attorney Deny Child Sex Charges
However, after the victim gave her emotional address to the court, Bell’s attorney, Ian Friedman, made it crystal clear that the actor denies that any sex act took place between him and the teenage girl.
“The claim that he is a pedophile lacks any sort of factual support,” Bells attorney told the judge. “His conduct was not correct, it was not proper. But I have to be very clear. What the victim is claiming to have occurred here — not only am I saying that it did not happen, not only would Mr. Bell say that that did not happen, but the evidence in this case would suggest that it did not happen.”
He goes on to say that if there were enough evidence, he believes to prosecution would have went to “great lengths” to pursue child sex charges against Drake Bell.
“We all know that this prosecutor’s office would pursue child sex charges and go to great lengths, agressively as they should, and we’ve seen it many times,” Friedman continued. “If they felt that that was a provable case, I’m sure we would not be talking here today about an ‘attempted child endangerment’ (charge) and a ‘disseminating matter harmful to a minor.'”