CLEVELAND (AP) – One of the stars of the popular children’s show on Nickelodeon “Drake & Josh” is facing criminal charges for a girl he met online and who attended his concert in 2017 in Ohio when she was 15.
Jared “Drake” Bell, 34, pleaded not guilty in a Cleveland courtroom on a criminal charge of attempting to endanger children and a misdemeanor of distributing harmful substances to minors.
“All the facts will be revealed in court,”
Bell was accused of information that usually indicates that a recognition agreement has been reached. He is due to appear before a judge on June 23.
Tyler Sinclair, a spokesman for Cuiahoga County Attorney Michael O’Malley, said the girl filed a complaint with Canadian police in October 2018. Police there contacted Cleveland police, which sparked an investigation.
The attempt to endanger children was linked to the concert, Sinclair said, where Bell “violated his duty of care” and risked injuring the victim. He did not develop further.
Bell and the girl “made a connection” online a few years before the concert, Sinclair said. The spread of harmful material allegations concerns Bell, who sent the girl “inappropriate messages on social media,” Sinclair said.
Bell, also a singer, began acting as a child, but was catapulted to stardom as a teenager with Nickelodeon’s Amanda Show and later Drake & Josh, which debuted on the channel in January 2004. The final episode aired in September 2007. Bell and co-star Josh Beck also star in two films, Drake and Josh.
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