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Ex-49er Dana Stubblefield is charged with raping a developmentally disabled woman

Former NFL player Dana Stubblefield in 2008. Prosecutors say Stubblefield's DNA was found on a woman who accused him of rape.

Former NFL player Dana Stubblefield in 2008. Prosecutors say Stubblefield’s DNA was found on a woman who accused him of rape.

(Paul Sakuma / Associated Press)

Santa Clara County prosecutors charged former San Francisco 49er Dana Stubblefield with multiple counts of rape Monday, alleging the retired NFL player assaulted a developmentally disabled woman who wanted to be the family’s nanny.

Stubblefield, a 49ers defensive lineman for seven years, is accused of attacking the 31-year-old woman when she visited his Morgan Hill home April 9, 2015. Prosecutors said the woman immediately reported the attack to police after she left his home and that DNA from her matched Stubblefield.

“This was a crime of violence against a vulnerable victim,” said Santa Clara County Deputy Dist. Atty. Tim McInerny in a statement. “She was looking for a job and she was unconscionably assaulted.”

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Stubblefield is charged with rape by force or violence, rape of a person incapable of giving consent, oral copulation by force or violence, oral copulation of a person incapable of giving consent and false imprisonment. He is being held on $250,000 bail and faces up to 16 years and eight months in prison if convicted.

Stubblefield’s attorney disputed the allegations made by prosecutors and said that the accuser had requested a job and money after the “consensual” encounter.

“Dana Stubblefield is being unfairly targeted due to his celebrity and wealth by someone with full motivation to lie,” attorney Ken Rosenfeld said in a statement. “Mr. Stubblefield passed a lie detector test with flying colors and will present a full, vigorous defense against these allegations.”

Authorities say that Stubblefield saw the woman’s services listed on sittercity.com, a babysitter service website, the day before the attack. The pair exchanged phone numbers and agreed to meet the next day at Stubblefield’s home, according to an affidavit from the Morgan Hill Police Department supporting charges against the retired NFL player.

Stubblefield texted the woman his address and said he’d pay for her gas, mileage and time, according to the document. Their meeting lasted about 20 minutes, then the woman left.

“Minutes later, the victim received a text message from the suspect stating he wished to pay for her time,” court documents allege. “When the victim returned to the residence, the suspect picked her up and carried her into a room where he forcefully raped her, and forced her to orally copulate him.”

After the assault, McInerny said, Stubblefield gave the woman $80 for “gas money” and sent her on her way.

The woman drove straight to the Morgan Hill Police Department to report the attack and underwent a physical examination by the Sexual Assault Response Team, McInerny said.

“It’s a thorough investigation and it’s important for us to get it right,” McInenry said in explaining why the charges were filed more than a year after when authorities say the attack took place. “We took all the steps we needed to take to file charges against him this week.”

Rosenfeld, the defense attorney, countered that the accuser is a “sophisticated party” with prior brushes with the law, including convictions in 2013 for resisting arrest and assault. She was also arrested on suspicion of hit-and-run, the lawyer said.

“The clear motivation here is money,” Rosenfeld said.

The initial court date for Stubblefield has not yet been scheduled.

Stubblefield spent 11 seasons with the 49ers, Redskins and Raiders, winning a Super Bowl title with San Francisco in 1995. Among his personal accolades were three Pro Bowl selections, NFL defensive rookie of the year honors (1993) and a defensive player of the year award (1997).

He was also the first NFL player charged in the BALCO steroids scandal that rocked professional sports. He pleaded guilty in 2008.

For breaking California news, follow @JosephSerna.

Times staff writer Matt Hamilton contributed to this report.

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