Drake Bell Pleads Guilty to Child Endangerment After Sexting 15-Year-Old
Early this month, once-beloved Nickelodeon alum Drake Bell was charged with child endangerment.
Following his Ohio arrest, he entered a plea of not guilty, and the details of the charges were unclear.
Now, the almost-35-year-old singer has altered his plea, admitting his guilt in court.
And the charges stem from a conversation of a “sexual nature” with a then 15-year-old girl.
On Wednesday, June 23, Drake Bell amended his plea in a court hearing.
He how pleads guilty to two charges against him.
This comes weeks after his arrest in Cleveland, Ohio.
The charges were attempted endangering children and disseminating matter harmful to juveniles.
He entered a guilty plea following a plea deal agreement.
During the virtual court appearance, Bell admitted his guilt to both charges.
“My understanding is there’s been a plea agreement,” the judge began.
It was a deal “reached where the defendant will plead guilty to count one attempted endangering children, a felony in the fourth degree.”
Bell had also agreed to “plead guilty to count two: disseminating matter harmful to juveniles, a misdemeanor the first degree.”
The judge informed Bell that the charge of attempted endangering of children can lead to real consequences.
Under the law, the sentence can range from six to eighteen months in monthly increments.
The sentence can include that prison time and/or a fine of up to $5,000.
The second charge, involving exposing minors to harmful material, carries a sentence of up to six months behind bars.
This can take place alongside or in place of a $1,000 fine.
In both cases, neither charge mandates prison time … but the sentences could potentially last for two full years.
“However, if you go to prison, upon your release, you could be subjected to a discretionary period of three years post-release control,” the judge warned.
“Post-release control could involve restrictions on your activities,” Bell was informed.
“If you were to violate those restrictions, you can be returned to prison, [for] up to a maximum of one half of your original sentence,” the judge said.
“Do you understand the potential penalties?” the judge then asked during the hearing.
Bell replied: “I do, Your Honor. Yes.”
That was not the only question that the judge asked in order to ensure that he understood.
“Do you understand if you plead guilty that is an admission by you that you did these crimes?” the judge asked.
Drake Bell then replied: “Yes, Your Honor.”
His sentencing is scheduled for July 12.
At that time, the victim will have the opportunity to read out a victim statement if she so chooses.
Bell’s attorney has since commented that all of the questions surrounding the case will be answered at the sentencing hearing.
Among them, why Bell altered his plea to guilty.
It is reported that the incident in question took place on December 1, 2017.
This was the same day that Bell was scheduled to perform at a venue in Cleveland, Ohio.
Per the report, Bell engaged in an inappropriate chat with a 15-year-old girl — a chat that was at times sexual in nature.
Source: Read Full Article