LOS ANGELES (AP) — Former NFL safety Darren Sharper has been charged in Los Angeles with drugging and raping two women, prosecutors said Friday.
Sharper was expected to be arraigned on two counts of rape by use of drugs, four counts of furnishing a controlled substance, and one count of possession of a controlled substance, according to a statement from the Los Angeles County district attorney's office.
The complaint alleges the controlled substances were morphine and zolpidem, which is sold under the brand name Ambien.
A call from The Associated Press seeking comment from Nandi Campbell, an attorney for Sharper, was not immediately returned.
Sharper, 38, played in the NFL from 1997 to 2010, mostly with the Packers.
Prosecutors said he met two women at a West Hollywood nightclub on Oct. 30, invited them to a party and stopped at his hotel room.
He is accused of giving a shot of alcohol to each of the women before they passed out. One woman told investigators she woke up naked hours later with Sharper sexually assaulting her. The other woman awoke and "interrupted his actions," according to the criminal complaint.
On Jan. 14, Sharper met two other women at the same nightclub and invited them to a party. On the way, he invited both to his room and offered them shots before they passed out, prosecutors said.
When they woke up early the next day, one woman believed she had been sexually assaulted, the complaint said. Both women left his hotel and sought medical treatment.
Sharper was arrested on Jan. 17 and released on $200,000 bail.
Prosecutors want his bail raised to $10 million because the Miami, Fla., resident faces similar investigations in Arizona, Nevada and Louisiana.
If convicted in the California case, he could face more than 30 years in state prison.
Sharper was selected All-Pro six times and chosen for the Pro Bowl five times. He played in two Super Bowls, one with the Packers as a rookie and a second with the Saints.
SOCHI, Russia (AP) — Meet the Browns, unofficially the U.S. First Family of Curling.
There's Erika, skip of the women's team competing in the Sochi Olympics. Her brother, Craig, is also in Russia as an alternate for the men's team.
Then there's Steve and Diane Brown, the parents, who also curled for the U.S. Steve will be coaching the U.S. wheelchair team in the Sochi Paralympics next month.
Between the four natives of Madison, Wisconsin, the Browns have won 19 national titles in singles and mixed competition dating back to the mid-1980s, and — just for good measure — own the biggest curling retailer in the United States.
Oh, and Erika is married to three-time Canadian and world curling champion Ian Tetley.
Perhaps it's not a surprise that the 'First Family' nickname has stuck. Curling is in their blood.
"Certainly if our children want to play, they will get some proper training," Craig said, with a smile.
And the latest generation is already being groomed — Erika says her kids, 6-year-old Cole and 7-year-old Nathan, have already tried curling and are on the ice "at least every week or two."
"As soon as they get a little bigger, we will work on it," Erika says. "I'm hoping they've got some genes in there that are going to spur this onto the next generation."
For the moment, though, the focus is on bringing home a first Olympic medal to add to the family collection of silverware. As it stands, Erika appears to be in the best position to accomplish that, with her experienced team that also contains Debbie McCormick, Jessica Schultz and Ann Swisshelm among the favorites in Sochi.
Twenty-six years after competing in her first Olympics, as a 15-year-old schoolgirl in Calgary, Erika is back for her third and likely last shot at the biggest prize in the sport.
"It's been a long time," said the 41-year-old Erika, who was first taken to watch her dad curl when she was just 7 days old. "I had a few flashbacks walking in (to the Opening Ceremony), with my team and my brother. We walked in together. It was great."
The Sochi experience will be slightly different for Craig. While her sister will be running the show for the women's team, he will probably have to be satisfied simply being the rock-tester and biggest cheerleader for the men's team.
As the alternate, he is unlikely to play a competitive role on the ice but will still pick up a medal if the U.S. reaches the podium under skip John Shuster. On current form that is unlikely, although the U.S. did win bronze in Turin in 2006.
"I'm here to help these guys do whatever they can to win," he said.
For his day job, Craig runs the family shop, which he says is "maybe the biggest independent curling retailer in the whole world."
Whatever the results in Sochi, it'll be a landmark Olympics for the Brown family. Erika's husband and Craig's wife and son are flying in to Sochi for the Olympics. Diane and Steve will be watching on TV in the early hours back in Madison.
"We just love the sport, everything about it," Craig says. "There's nothing not to love about it."
KRASNAYA POLYANA, Russia (AP) — Based on training sessions in the Caucasus Mountains above Sochi, the battle for the Winter Olympics' first-ever gold medal in women's ski jumping was between Sara Takanashi and Daniela Iraschko-Stolz.
Carina Vogt had other ideas.
A distant second place to Takanashi in the World Cup standings and never a winner of a World Cup event, Vogt now owns the most important medal in her sport.
"I cannot find the right words, it's amazing, I wouldn't have thought it was possible three hours ago," the German jumper said. "It's amazing. I'm the first woman Olympic champion in ski jumping."
Only in 2011 did the International Olympic Committee agreed to allow the women to compete at Sochi — 90 years after men first jumped at the inaugural Winter Games in 1924.
What's even more amazing is that 17-year-old Takanashi didn't even make the podium — Iraschko-Stolz took silver and Coline Mattell of France earned bronze, leaving Takansahi fourth.
The 22-year-old Vogt, a trained police officer, didn't come to Sochi with a glowing resume. She finished third with Germany in a mixed team at the world titles in Italy last year, where she was also fifth in the individual normal hill.
But her World Cup record has improved — one sixth placing in 2011-12, a third, fourth and sixth in 2012-13 and perhaps more tellingly, a consistent four second-place finishes this season which indicated she may have been closing in on something special.
Two of those four second placings came in Japan on back-to-back weekends, losing both times to Takanashi and a very parochial home crowd. Less than a month later, she'd be beating the Japanese star where it counted most.
Vogt, who became interested in ski jumping when she became mesmerized by it on TV as a four-year-old, performed when it counted Tuesday, scoring 247.4 points on the normal hill at the RusSki Gorki Jumping Center, six better than the Iraschko-Stolz.
Takanashi finished the first round in third place, meaning she would jump third-last in the final round, a place she was not used to considering she has led and won so many World Cups this year.
Iraschko-Stolz took the lead with three jumpers to go, leaving Vogt needing a good jump to overtake her. It wasn't as good as the Austrian's final jump, but enough to give the German a six-point edge.
Japan had been counting on Takanashi to end an Olympic gold medal drought. The country's last gold came at the 2006 Turin Games when Shizuka Arakawa won the ladies singles in figure skating.
"I couldn't jump the way I wanted to on both attempts." Takanashi said. "I came here wanting to do my best. I'm incredibly disappointed."
Sarah Hendrickson, the 19-year-old defending world champion from Park City, Utah, finished 21st of 30 starters, clearly still affected by right knee surgery she underwent in August. Although she showed improved form Tuesday, she plans to take the rest of the season off.
Hendrickson says she wasn't surprised to see Takanashi off the podium.
"It's a crazy world the Olympics," she said. "It shows she is a human being. I wish I could tell her she is still an amazing athlete and that she has many good years to come."
Hendrickson, because she has no ranking from being off the World Cup circuit with her injury, was the first jumper in the Olympic final.
"It's an amazing feeling to be the first one to jump in the first women's ski jumping competition at the Olympics," she said. "My performance was not the best, but I kind of expected it."
Two other Americans from Park City competed — Jessica Jerome was 10th and former world champion Lindsey Van 15th.