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Ex-NFL star Darren Sharper to stay in L.A. jail until Friday

Ex-NFL star Darren Sharper is expected to remain in a Los Angeles jail this week as he awaits a court hearing Friday, his latest appearance amid a string of sexual assault investigations spanning five states.

Los Angeles prosecutors charged the former New Orleans Saints safety last month with two counts of rape and five drug counts, alleging he attacked two women in two separate incidents.

He was free on $1-million bail but was taken into custody again Thursday after New Orleans police issued a warrant for his arrest, alleging Sharper and an acquaintance assaulted two women there. Sharper, 38, turned himself in to LAPD detectives at his attorney's office.

He made a brief court appearance Monday, but a hearing on the New Orleans warrant was delayed until Friday afternoon. Because he is being held without bail, Sharper will remain at Men’s Central Jail until then.

Court documents filed last month in connection with the L.A. case revealed Sharper was also suspected of assaults in New Orleans, Las Vegas and Tempe, Ariz. Miami Beach police are also looking into an alleged sexual battery by Sharper.

Charges have been filed only in the Los Angeles case, though officials in the other jurisdictions said their investigations remain ongoing. Tempe police Sgt. Mike Pooley said his department had expected to present its case to prosecutors this week, but that could be delayed as they await lab results.

Sharper has pleaded not guilty to the Los Angeles charges.

"We look forward to the true facts being revealed in this case, and we are hopeful that Mr. Sharper will be fully exonerated before this case is concluded," Blair Berk, one of Sharper's attorneys, previously said.

In all, Sharper is accused of drugging and sexually assaulting at least eight women in four states, in addition to the alleged sexual battery in Florida. The five-time Pro Bowl selection was suspended from his job with the NFL Network after he was first arrested by the LAPD in January; he has since been fired.

Court documents outline a disturbing pattern in the alleged incidents in Los Angeles, New Orleans, Las Vegas and Tempe, which occurred between Sept. 22 and Jan. 15.

Victims reported meeting the five-time Pro Bowl player -- usually at a nightclub -- then going back to his hotel room or home. 

Sharper allegedly offered the women shots to drink, after which they reported immediately blacking out. Many of the women woke up with little or no memory of what happened after the drinks, but felt as though they had been sexually assaulted. 

The court documents initially said only one woman had been assaulted in New Orleans, but when police announced the arrest warrant, they said “new information” revealed a second woman was also assaulted that night at the same location.

Sharper and Erik Nunez, 26, are accused of aggravated rape in the incident, which New Orleans police said carries a potential prison sentence of hard labor for life.

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kate.mather@latimes.com

richard.winton@latimes.com

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