Drake Bell took to Instagram Friday to explain his guilty plea in June for improper conduct with an underage girl.
The 35-year-old former Drake & Josh star also wanted to address what he called, “entirely false” reports regarding his plea, for which he was sentenced in July to two years probation and community service.
Bell, whose birth name is Jared Drake Bell, was indicted in May on charges stemming from an interaction with a then-15-year-old girl in December of 2017. He initially entered a not guilty plea before deciding to take a deal, pleading guilty to attempted endangering children, a fourth-degree felony, and disseminating matter harmful to juveniles, a first-degree misdemeanor.
In his post, Bell explained, “I didn’t get arrested, I didn’t go to jail,” and for that matter he didn’t change his name and move to Mexico, he said in the Spanish-subtitled post. Bell maintains, “I responded to a fan whose age I didn’t know, and when I became aware of their age, all conversation and communication stopped.”
The alleged victim, “continued to come to shows and pay for meet and greets,” Bell said, maintaining he didn’t know this was the same person he’d cut off.
Bell maintains that while his behavior was “reckless and irresponsible,” he wanted to make clear, “there were no sexual images, nothing physical” between he and his accuser. “I was not charged with the disseminating of photographs or…anything like that. This is strictly over text messages.”
“It’s not me telling you that the claims are false, but the state of Ohio,” Bell added. “If these claims were remotely true…I would not be here at home with my wife and my son.”
Bell’s statements sync with what his attorneys claimed at sentencing.
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