Darren Sharper, the retired NFL great who now faces accusations that he raped nine women in five states between last September and January, will not be released on bail after an Arizona judge ruled Thursday that the proof that he drugged and raped a victim in that state was “evident.”
In a Maricopa County, Arizona, courtroom Monday, a lawyer for Sharper argued that DNA found inside the vagina of one alleged victim that matched Sharpers on 12 of 16 points could have arrived there by means other than rape, such as if Sharper picked up the woman to place her on a couch — or he could have drooled on her when he fell asleep on the same couch.
Sharper is currently held in a Los Angeles jail where his bail had been set at $1 million. But a judge there revoked Sharper’s bail after an Arizona grand jury indicted him in March.
Darren Sharper who played for the Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings before finishing his career as part of the New Orleans Saints 2010 Super Bowl championship team, was one of the NFL’s greatest cornerbacks. His 63 career interceptions are seventh on the all-time list and his 11 touchdown returns off of interceptions rank second.
But since January the edifice of football stardom has come crashing down around Darren Sharper as he faces nine eerily similar accusations of date rape. In each, a woman says she was given a drink by Sharper after which she became immediately so intoxicated that she could remember nothing for the next several hours.
Each woman woke up either with Sharper nude on top of her, or later with the strong feeling of having been sexually assaulted, but unable to remember.
Responding to defense arguments that the DNA found to match Sharper’s may have come from “skin or saliva,” not sexual penetration, prosecutor Yigael Cohen responded that such interaction would not account for Sharper’s DNA making its way inside the woman’s vagina.
The Darren Sharper defense team also noted that none of the NFL star’s sperm was found on or in any of the Arizona victims. But a Tempe, Arizona Detective testified that he had learned that Sharper had a vasectomy, which would account for the lack of residual sperm cells.
Skip Donau, a lawyer for Darren Sharper, asked the the detective’s testimony regarding the Sharper vasectomy procedure be “given no weight based on the fact that it hasn’t been confirmed in any fashion.”
The detective, Kevin Mace, said that he learned of the Sharper vasectomy from Los Angeles police, and also from an alleged victim in Los Angeles who had a previous consensual sex with Darren Sharper.
Sharper has said that he is innocent of the rape charges in California and Arizona, the only states here he has been formally charged. There is an arrest warrant for Darren Sharper in Louisiana and he is under investigation for similar rape allegations in Nevada and Florida.