Disgraced former NFL star Darren Sharper was sentenced Tuesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court to 20 years in prison, the final sentence in a long, sordid saga in which he pleaded guilty or no contest to drugging and raping nine women in multiple states.
According to the Los Angeles Times, a plea deal with L.A. prosecutors calls for him to serve half his sentence, minus time already served — though a recently passed California law may increase his chances for parole and also decrease the time he serves, based on whether his were considered violent crimes, a deputy district attorney said.
Shackled and in an orange jumpsuit Tuesday, Sharper, 41, chose not to speak. However, two of his victims did.
Via The Times, the first described how the night at a club developed until Sharper handed her a drink, then everything went black.
“I can only imagine myself lying there like a vegetable while he took advantage of my body without my permission," she said. "I have lost every bit of self-confidence I’ve ever had and am always in fear while alone. It doesn’t matter whether it’s day or night, I can see a guy and automatically in my head think, ‘What if this guy tries to rape me?’”
She later added, “I feel lost in this world.”
The other victim, unlike her friend, escaped being raped. Still, she said can’t shake the chill from having no memory of the events.
“I’ve tried to remember and I can’t, not a thing. It’s the darkest moment in my life," she said. "It’s the moment when someone had complete control over me. I don’t know what happened to me, I don’t know what he did with me, I’ll never know.”
She suffered a bloody mouth and nose and said she had lingering nightmares of Sharper raping and strangling her. “It got so bad," she said, "I stopped trying to sleep.”
A five-time Pro Bowl selection who was working as an analyst for NFL Network, Sharper has been sentenced for crimes in California, Arizona, Nevada and Louisiana. He also was ordered in federal court in Louisiana to serve more than 18 years. All sentences are to be served concurrently.