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Josh Peck breaks silence over Drake Bell’s sexual assault revelations

Josh Peck has spoken out after being criticised for his silence over Drake Bell’s recent sexual abuse revelations.

The two actors co-led Nickelodeon’s popular Noughties sitcom, Drake & Josh, in which they played stepbrothers who live in the same house.

In the new documentary series Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV, Bell says he suffered sexual abuse aged 15 at the hands of actor and dialogue coach Brian Peck, a claim that “devastated” Dan Schneider, who was the kids channel’s executive producer at the time.

On Thursday (21 March), four days after the documentary’s release, Peck shared a statement on Instagram.

“I finished the Quiet On Set documentary and took a few days to process it,” his post began. “I reached out to Drake privately, but wanted to give my support for the survivors who were brave enough to share their stories of emotional and physical abuse on Nickelodeon sets with the world.”

He continued: “Children should be protected. Reliving this publicly is incredibly difficult, but I hope it can bring healing for the victims and their families as well as necessary change to our industry.”

The statement comes a day after Bell asked fans to “take it easy” on Peck, who received a barrage of backlash for staying quiet on the subject.

“I just want to clear something up,” Bell said in a video. “I’ve noticed a lot of comments on some of Josh’s TikToks and some of his posts and I just want to let you guys know that processing this and going through this is a really emotional time and a lot of it is very, very difficult.”

The actor continuedL “So not everything is put out to the public, but I just want you guys to know that he [Peck] has reached out to me, and it’s been very sensitive.

“But he has reached out to talk with me and help me work through this and has been really, really great. So I just wanted to let you guys know that and to take it a little easy on him.”

In August 2003, Brian Peck, who is not related to Josh, was arrested on more than a dozen charges related to sexual abuse allegations involving an unnamed minor.

A year later, he pleaded no contest to performing a lewd act with a 14 or 15-year-old and to oral copulation with a minor under 16. Brian Peck was sentenced to 16 months in prison and ordered to register as a sex offender in October 2004.

Quiet on Set: The Dark Side of Kids TV, a four-part docuseries investigating the toxic work conditions at children’s shows in the 1990s and early 2000s, aired on 17 and 18 March.

It’s available to stream on Max and Discovery+.