Nickelodeon employed FIVE convicted child molesters

Nickelodeon employed FIVE convicted child molesters

Nickelodeon employed or worked with five child molesters as well as two others accused of pedophilia, court records show.

Two of the offenders were highlighted in a new HBO documentary about alleged child abuse at the channel.

But legal records show that convicted and accused pedophiles' prior involvement with the channel was far more extensive.

Nickelodeon says it has since improved its safeguards.

Molesters include Jason Handy, a Nickelodeon production assistant who had sexual contact with a nine-year-old girl; and Ezell Channel, hired as a production assistant at the cable channel after a child sex offense conviction, then arrested for sexually assaulting an underage teen at the studio.

Marty Weiss, a talent manager who placed clients on top Nickelodeon shows, was later convicted for 'lewd acts' with a 12-year-old male client.

And Cody Longo, late star of TeenNick 2012 show Hollywood Heights, was accused of sexual assault of a 9-year-old girl in Colorado in 2019 and pleaded guilty to a lesser charge two years later.

The HBO documentary Quiet on Set: the Dark Side of Kids TV also detailed the conviction of former Nickelodeon dialogue coach and actor Brian Peck, who molested child star Drake Bell when he was 15.

He went on to work at Disney after his conviction.

Bell himself was later convicted of distributing child porn, after allegations emerged that he groomed and sexually abused a 15-year-old.

Gabe Hoffman, a child safety activist, previously exposed child molesters who worked at Nickelodeon and other Hollywood studios in his 2014 documentary An Open Secret.

Gabe says the problem still exists: 'Convicted pedophiles still get hired in Hollywood today,' he said. 'Sex offenders worked with children at Nickelodeon, and unless the industry makes changes, more children in Hollywood will end up getting abused.'

Ezell Channel, 54, was convicted in 2003 for 'lewd acts' with a child under 14. He was released on probation less than two years later, and hired as a production assistant at Nickelodeon despite his conviction.

A mother reported him to police in 2005 after he started spending time with her teenage son and she found him on the Megan's Law sex offender registry website.

Prosecutors accused Channel of luring a 13-year-old and a 14-year-old into the studio, showing them pornography and inappropriately touching them in November 2005.

He was convicted again, but released in 2010 according to Megan's Law data. The site says he is now homeless, living in Los Angeles.

Handy, another Nickelodeon production assistant, sent pictures of himself masturbating to Brandi, a child guest actor on the Amanda Bynes Show in 2003, her mother MJ told the HBO documentary.

Police investigated and found Handy, 49, described himself as a 'pedophile, full blown' in his private journal.

In 2004 Handy pleaded no contest to felony counts of lewd acts on a nine-year-old child, distributing sexually explicit material, and a misdemeanor of child sexual exploitation, and was sentenced to six years in prison.

He also reoffended, charged again in North Carolina in 2014 for indecent liberties with a child and sex offender registry violations. He is currently in federal prison in Virginia and not due for release until 2038.

Weiss, 58, was a Hollywood talent manager who repped child clients placed on Nickelodeon's iCarly show and Disney's Good Luck Charlie.

One former client told police in 2012 that Weiss molested him about 30-40 times over a three-year period when the boy was 11 or 12 years old.

In June 2012 was sentenced to one year in county jail and five years of probation.

According to Megan's Law data, he was released the same year, meaning he served less than six months after his sentencing. He now lives in North Hollywood.

As well as criminal convictions for child sex offenses by people close to the channel, civil claims and public allegations have been made against two others.

Just this month former Nickelodeon adult performer Joby Harte, 42, was found liable for repeatedly sexually abusing Disney star and Forever In Your Mind boyband member Ricky Garcia, in a civil trial that awarded Garcia $6.5 million.

Harte, a British ex-TV presenter and talent manager, appeared in episodes of Nickelodeon show True Jackson VP, which ran from 2008 to 2011, and worked as a warm-up act for live audiences in 2012 and 2013 tapings.

And John Kricfalusi, the creator of Nickelodeon show Ren & Stimpy, was accused of sexual misconduct with two teenage girls he employed.

Kricfalusi's lawyer admitted in 2018 that 'for a brief time, 25 years ago, he had a 16-year-old girlfriend', and described his behavior towards one of the girls as an 'avid pursuit', not sexual harassment.

Rumors have swirled of inappropriate behavior or failed safeguarding of famous cast members of Nickelodeon shows.

Jamie Lynn Spears got pregnant at 16 while starring in Zoey 101, and Jennette McCurdy has said she was 'dating' a producer in their 30s when she was 15 during her role on Nickelodeon show iCarly.

A Nickelodeon spokesperson told ‘Though we cannot corroborate or negate allegations of behaviors from productions decades ago, Nickelodeon as a matter of policy investigates all formal complaints as part of our commitment to fostering a safe and professional workplace environment free of harassment or other kinds of inappropriate conduct.’