Josh Peck has opened up about his former co-star Drake Bell pleading guilty to attempted child endangerment and disseminating matter harmful to juveniles. “It’s upsetting and it’s an unfortunate situation,” the 34-year-old told reporters on July 15 at the premiere of his upcoming Disney+ adaptation, Turner & Hooch, Variety reported. “It’s disappointing.” The actor starred alongside Drake as his step-brother in the popular Nickelodeon series Drake & Josh, which aired in the early 2000s.
Drake, 35, has since been in the headlines for his legal woes. He was arrested on June 3 in Ohio, and later plead guilty to multiple charges related to child endangerment, for which he initially pleaded not guilty. On July 12, he was sentenced to two years probation and 200 hours of community service in a Cleveland court. The charges stemmed from an incident in December 2017, during a chat on the internet with an underage person that, at times, was allegedly “sexual in nature”.
Cleveland’s Fox TV affiliate, WJW, reported that the 15-year-old victim filed a report with her local police department in Canada in October 2018. Canadian authorities contacted Cleveland police, and it became known that the victim established a relationship with Drake a few years prior. She then attended his Cleveland concert, at which time, “[Drake] Bell violated his duty of care and, in doing so, created a risk of harm to the victim,” the Prosecutor’s Office reported, per WJW. The investigation also reportedly revealed that Drake allegedly sent the victim inappropriate messages on social media in the months leading up to the concert.
He was arraigned in Cuyahoga County court and was freed on a $2,500 personal bond. He agreed to have no contact with the alleged victim in the case. “All facts will be revealed in the courtroom. There is no additional comments at this time,” Drake’s lawyer told HollywoodLife prior to his sentencing. During the Zoom hearing, Drake told the court, “I accept this plea because my conduct was wrong. I’m sorry the victim was harmed. It was not my intention. I have taken this matter very, very seriously. And again, I just want to apologize to her and anyone else who may have been affected by my actions.”