Dustin Diamond, who played nerdy sidekick Samuel "Screech" Powers on Saved By the Bell, its various spinoff installments and its series predecessor Good Morning Miss Bliss, has apologized for sharing sex and drug-related allegations about his former cast mates that may have not been entirely true.

In a Dr. Oz Show episode airing November 10, Diamond addressed his destructive behavior and run-ins with the law since the series, which includes convictions and jail time for disorderly conduct and a concealed-weapon stemming from stabbing a fellow bar patron in Wisconsin on Christmas Day in 2014. He also reached out to his fellow Saved By the Bell costars, and offered an explanation for the way he portrayed them in his 2009 tell-all, Behind the Bell. The screenplay for Lifetime's 2014 Unauthorized Saved By the Bell Story was largely based on Diamond's book.

"You say your fellow costars were sleeping around with each other, and with many guest stars on the show. You alleged that there were drugs, including steroid use by Mark-Paul Gosselaar," host Mehmet Oz said to Diamond, describing claims in the book.

But Diamond said he had a defense — he didn't really write it, technically.

"What the general public doesn't realize, I didn't write the book. I had a ghostwriter," Diamond, who must have never requested a pre-publication peek at the book draft that bears his name on the cover. He claimed the allegations in Behind the Bell were as "upsetting" to him as they were to his cast members.

The onetime Celebrity Big Brother UK competitor delivered a mea culpa to cast members Gosselaar, Lark Voorhies, Tiffani Amber Thiessen, Mario Lopez and Elizabeth Berkley.

"I will say, guys, I think you’re fantastic, working with you has been just one of the icons of my life and I’m sorry that this has taken advantage of me — the book and other situations I’m sure we’ll talk about here," Diamond said. "But I’m sure that you’ve experienced downfalls, as well, in your time and I’m still loving you guys."

 

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