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Drake Bell charged with two crimes against children in Cleveland

Drake Bell, of Nickelodeon

Bell pleaded not guilty in court on Wednesday, according to the docket.

CLEVELAND — EDITOR’S NOTE: The video in the player above is from a 3News affiliate, and is not related to this story.

Drake Bell, from Nickelodeon’s “Drake and Josh,” has pleaded not guilty to two counts of crimes against children in Cuyahoga County Court.

Bell, 34, who also goes by his given first name, Jared, faces one count of attempted endangering children, a fourth-degree felony, and one count of disseminating matter harmful to juveniles, a first-degree misdemeanor. 

According to a spokesperson for the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, the female victim, who was 15 at the time the incident occurred, filed a report with her local police department in Canada in October of 2018. The incident happened “at a Cleveland nightclub on Old River Road in the city’s East Bank of The Flats district.”

The court docket states the crimes allegedly occurred Dec. 1, 2017 – the same date of a concert Bell had been scheduled to play at the Odeon, according to a tweet he sent out in October 2017. The docket also lists Cleveland Police as the agency that arrested Bell.

The Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office says Canadian authorities contacted Cleveland Police, who then conducted their own investigation. That investigation found the victim had established a relationship with Bell several years before the incident in question occurred. She apparently attended his concert in Dec. 2017, where Bell “violated his duty of care, and, in doing so, created a risk of harm to the victim,” according to a statement from the prosecutor’s office. 

The investigation also revealed that Bell had sent the victim inappropriate messages on social media in the months leading up to the Dec. 2017 concert.

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The court docket states that Bell pleaded not guilty in court on June 3, 2021, and was ordered not to have any contact with the victim in the case. He posted a $2,500 bond and was released. A judge also ordered him to submit DNA in the case, which is standard operating procedure in the court. 

Bell is scheduled to appear before a judge on June 26, 2021, for a pretrial hearing in the case. 

The court docket lists Ian Friedman as Bell’s attorney. 3News reached out to Friedman for a statement, but he declined to comment at this time.

Bell is best known for his time on Nickelodeon’s “Drake and Josh,” which aired from 2004 to 2007.

EDITOR’S NOTE: The video in the player below is from a previous, unrelated story.

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