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Former Vikings Safety Darren Sharper Charged with Rape

Updated: 02/14/2014 3:51 PM
Created: 02/14/2014 12:14 PM KSTP.com

Former Minnesota Vikings safety Darren Sharper has been charged with drugging and raping two women, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney's office.

Sharper appeared in Los Angeles Superior Court on Friday but his arraignment was postponed until Feb. 20 at the request of his lawyers.

Prosecutors immediately filed a motion to raise his bail to $10 million and outlined details of other alleged assaults and druggings in Las Vegas, Tempe, Ariz., and New Orleans. Prosecutors say Sharper is under investigation in connection with five more rapes and 11 druggings in other states.

Sharper has not been charged in the other jurisdictions and remains under investigation. He was expected to be arraigned on two counts of rape by use of drugs, four counts of furnishing a controlled substance, and one count of possession of a controlled substance, according to a statement from the district attorney.

The complaint alleges the controlled substances were morphine and zolpidem, which is sold under the brand name Ambien.

The felony case involves alleged incidents in October and January. Prosecutors say Sharper met women at a West Hollywood nightclub, invited them to a party but stopped at his hotel room, where the crimes are alleged to have occurred.

He is accused of giving a shot of alcohol to each of the women before they passed out. One woman told investigators she woke up naked hours later with Sharper sexually assaulting her. The other woman awoke and "interrupted his actions," according to the complaint.

On Jan. 14, Sharper met two other women at the same nightclub and invited them to a party. On the way, he invited both to his room and offered them shots before they passed out, prosecutors say.

When they woke up the next day, one woman believed she had been sexually assaulted, the complaint said. Both women left his hotel and sought medical treatment.

Sharper was arrested Jan. 17 and released on $200,000 bail.

Prosecutors will seek to raise his bail to $10 million because the Miami, Fla., resident faces similar investigations elsewhere.

If convicted in the California case, Sharper could face more than 30 years in state prison.

Sharper, who played 14 seasons with the Vikings, Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints, was named to five Pro Bowls and was a two-time All-Pro. He was named to the NFL All-Decade Team for the 2000s.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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