Former Nickelodeon star Drake Bell offered his fans somewhat of an explanation surrounding his child endangerment conviction.
“A lot of the news that you’ve been hearing, most of the news that you’ve heard recently, is entirely false and wrong, and I feel that you deserve, and I owe you an explanation,” he said in an Instagram post.
Bell was sentenced to two years probation in July and plead guilty to criminal charges involving minors, Fox News reported.
Bell told his followers that he had not changed his name to Drake Campana, which is his Instagram name. But he did admit that he was part of a three-year investigation and gave more details about his communications with a minor over text messages.
“I know that this has moved very quickly for you, but for me, it’s been a three-year thorough investigation into every false claim that has been made, and it’s not me telling you that the claims are false, but the state of Ohio has proven the claims to be false,” Bell said. “If these claims were remotely true, my situation would be very different, and I would not be here at home with my wife and my son. But that being said, I’m not perfect, and I made mistakes. I responded to a fan whose age I didn’t know … yet when I became aware of their age, all conversation and communication stopped.”
He continued, “And this individual continued to come to shows and pay for meet and greets, all while I was unaware that this was the same person that I was communicating with online. And, uh, and that’s what I pled guilty to. You know, I … it was reckless and irresponsible text messages.
“I want to make clear that there were no sexual images, nothing physical, between me and this individual,” he continued. “I was not charged with anything physical. I was not charged with disseminating a photograph or images or anything like that. This is strictly over text messages. When I was presented with a plea deal because of the messages, I felt that it was the best way to get this over quickly and for everybody involved to be able to move on and for me to get back to doing what I love, and that’s making music for you.”
He then thanked his fans for “sticking by” him.