Darren Sharper Reaches New Plea Agreement: Latest Details and Comments

Alec NathanFeatured ColumnistMarch 2, 2016

Former NFL safety Darren Sharper, left, with his attorney Leonard Levine appear in Los Angeles Superior Court on Monday, March 23, 2015. Sharper was sentenced to nine years in federal prison Monday immediately after he pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a woman in Arizona, marking the first change of plea of the day for the former safety accused of drugging and assaulting women in four states. (AP Photo/Nick Ut, Pool)
Nick Ut/Associated Press

Former Pro Bowl safety Darren Sharper could be headed to prison for much longer than he expected after reaching a new plea deal related to charges he raped nine women in four states.

The new deal "could put him in prison for more than nine years and require him to testify against two co-defendants at an upcoming federal trial," according to documents obtained by USA Today's Brent Schrotenboer on Wednesday.

Judge Jane Triche Milazzo recently rejected as "inappropriate" a previous plea deal with a nine-year prison term. Sharper had entered either no-contest or guilty pleas in four separate states on charges of raping nine women, per Schrotenboer.

Sharper could have opted to withdraw his original guilty plea after the judge rejected the terms of his first plea agreement, but going to trial could have resulted in the 40-year-old being sentenced to 20 years in jail, according to the report.

Now Sharper has a June 16 sentencing date after agreeing to cooperate and testify against New Orleans waiter Erik Nunez and former sheriff's deputy Brandon Licciardi, who are scheduled to go to trial on May 16 for their alleged roles in Sharper's date-rape scheme.

Sharper was originally slated to be sentenced March 17.

"Mr. Sharper respectfully requests that his sentencing be continued until after the trial of this matter, currently scheduled for May 16, 2016, so that the Court can evaluate his full cooperation in connection with sentencing," Sharper's attorneys said in court documents, per Schrotenboer. "The government consents to this request."