Drake Bell denies he abused his ex-girlfriend, but he dated her when she was underage. That makes him a creep.
Drake Bell has been #MeToo-ed. In a TikTok post, the former Nickelodeon star’s ex-girlfriend accused him of being abusive throughout their relationship. A claim which Bell, of course, denies.
Whether Bell did abuse his ex-girlfriend is a question for the justice system. What’s unquestionably true is that Bell sounds like he was an absolute creep.
In a TikTok post that subsequently went viral, Melissa Lingafelt said that the former star of “Drake & Josh” both verbally and physically abused during their relationship.
It wasn’t until about a year when the verbal abuse started. And when I say verbal abuse, imagine the worst type of verbal abuse you could ever imagine, and that was what I got. It then turned into physical — hitting, throwing, everything. At the pinnacle of it, he dragged me down the stairs of our house in Los Feliz. My face hit every step on the way down. I have photos of this.
They reportedly began dating in 2006, when Lingafelt was 16.
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Bell, who is now 34 years old, denied the accusation in a statement to Variety Magazine (through his reps, of course):
I never abused my ex-girlfriend or did so many of the other things Melissa falsely claimed on her TikTok video. I do not know if today’s behavior is some kind of misguided quest for more money or attention. But I cannot and will not allow these offensive and defamatory allegations to go unchallenged and I am reviewing my legal options.
His “legal options,” of course, seem to take a page from the Justin Bieber book – but this is far from the same situation.
Drake Bell tried to pass off the allegations as just the trials and tribulations of a couple going through a messy breakup. He admitted that they called each other names towards the end of their relationship, but claimed that’s all that went down.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter. His behavior was unacceptable – it’s just a question of whether it was criminally unacceptable.
Lingafelt was only 16 years old, and Bell was a legal adult – four years her senior – when they got together. In California, where Lingafelt says they lived at the time of their relationship, the age of consent is currently 18.
What’s more, Lingafelt shared additional accusations that she wasn’t the only teenager to get involved with Bell. And according to her, one woman claimed Bell sexually assaulted her when she was in the eighth grade.
Whether Drake Bell abused Melissa Lingafelt (or anyone else) is the most important question here. But it’s not the only one. If he really made a habit of pursuing underage girls – as we know he did with Lingafelt – then he’s, at the very least, a creep.