Actor Drake Bell is denying allegations of verbal and physical abuse by former girlfriend Melissa Lingafelt.
“I never abused my ex-girlfriend or did so many of the other things Melissa falsely claimed on her TikTok video,” the 34-year-old said in a statement to People. “As our relationship ended — more than a decade ago — we, unfortunately, both called each other terrible names, as often happens when couples are breaking up. But that is it.” The pair dated for around two years beginning in 2006, when she was 16.
Bell added that he “provided her with financial support during a tough time” last year, despite their split. “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.”
The Drake and Josh star’s denial comes on the heels of Lingafelt’s accusations made on Wednesday, August 12.
“First off I’d like to start out by saying, I don’t really care if anyone believes me, as this is my story and my life, and something that I went through,” she began her video. “It wasn’t until recently that I actually realized that abuse isn’t something that all women have to go through.”
Lingafelt — who goes by her stage name Jimi Ono on social media — said she “moved in” with Bell and alleged “it wasn’t until about a year when the verbal abuse started,” the 30-year-old said. “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 drug me down the stairs of our house in Los Feliz. My face hit every step on the way down. I have photos of this.”
In a separate screenshot added to her Instagram Story, the singer and actress claimed she has “so many witnesses,” before noting she hopes her story “gives girls the strength to come out about their experiences with him,” alleging she “knows for a fact he has hundreds of victims.”
In Touch reached out to Bell’s rep but did not hear back by the time of publication.
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