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Ex-NFL Pro Bowler Darren Sharper charged with two counts of rape

Crime, Law and JusticeLaw EnforcementCrimeSexual AssaultNFL Pro BowlNFL

Former NFL Pro Bowl player Darren Sharper was charged Friday with two counts of rape by use of drugs, Los Angeles County district attorney's officials said.

Sharper, 38, is also facing four counts related to carrying or transporting the sedatives he allegedly used, including the drug zolpidem, or Ambien. He is also charged with one count of being in possession of morphine.

The former pro football player, dressed in a gray suit and white shirt, entered the courtroom in Los Angeles on Friday shortly after it opened about 8:30 a.m. He left roughly 20 minutes later, and as of 9 a.m., his case had not been called before the judge.

Sharper had been linked to sexual assaults that took place in West Los Angeles last October and in January.

Sharper, a resident of Miami Beach, Fla., was arrested on Jan. 17 and posted $200,000 bail later that night.

Sharper was also accused of sexual assault on Sept. 23 in New Orleans. In that case, a woman told authorities she had consumed a large amount of alcohol at several bars before she met Sharper. But she only had a vague recollection of the night.

The woman told police that Sharper took her to his apartment and sexually assaulted her without her consent, according to a report from the New Orleans Police Department. 

Sharper's attorney in New Orleans, Nandi F. Campbell, said police and the district attorney's office declined to file charges in the case because of a lack of evidence.

"No evidence suggests or implies that a sexual assault occurred," Campbell said in a news release.

A five-time Pro Bowl selection who played for the Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints, Sharper's latest job was as an analyst for the NFL Network.

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kate.mather@latimes.com

richard.winton@latimes.com

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