In a Phoenix courtroom Monday morning, former NFL standout Darren Sharper pleaded guilty to rape charges and received his sentence: nine years in federal prison.
Appearing via video conferencing, the former New Orleans Saints star and five-time Pro Bowl selection said little as he learned his fate.
Sharper’s legal troubles are not yet over. He will attend three similar hearings this week in California, Louisiana and Nevada. In each state, he is expected to plead guilty to drugging and sexually assaulting women when they were unconscious or otherwise unable to consent. His attorney, Blair Berk, told a Los Angeles court that they had reached a “global resolution” to the multiple charges against him.
The 39-year-old retired from the NFL in 2011 after winning a Super Bowl with the New Orleans Saints. After his 14-year football career, he worked as an analyst with the NFL Network.
In Arizona, Sharper admitted to sexually assaulting one victim and trying to assault another. Police have a different story: they say he drugged three women and sexually assaulted two of them in a friend’s apartment. In court on Monday, prosecutor Yigael Cohen read a letter from one of the victims, who says she suffered emotional distress after the attack.
According to authorities, a search of the apartment turned up a shot glass with white residue that turned out to be zolpidem, a sedative for which Sharper had a prescription.
Prosecutors in Nevada say that he expected to plead guilty to one felony charge of attempted sexual assault. He will face between 38 months and 8 years in prison, Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson told the Associated Press. The other jurisdictions have not yet provided details for the plea agreement, nor is it clear whether the sentences will be served concurrently.
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