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Former 49ers player Dana Stubblefield found guilty of rape

Former San Francisco 49ers player Dana Stubblefield was found guilty of rape by a Santa Clara County jury on Monday following a nine-month trial and five years after the woman reported the 2015 sexual assault to police.

He could face 15 years to life in prison.

Prosecutors said Stubblefield lured the then-31-year-old woman, who has developmental disabilities, to his home in Morgan Hill, California, on April 9, 2015, under the pretense of a babysitting job.

The jury found Stubblefield, 49, guilty of rape by force, oral copulation by force and false imprisonment and acquitted him of raping a person incapable of giving consent, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

Jurors also found that Stubblefield used a gun during the assault, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors said Stubblefield initially contacted the woman on a babysitting website and arranged an interview at his home in Morgan Hill, south of San Jose. Investigators said the interview lasted about 20 minutes, but the woman later returned to the house when she received a text from Stubblefield saying that he wanted to pay her for her time that day.

After raping her, investigators said, Stubblefield gave her $80 and let her go. The woman immediately went to the Morgan Hill Police Department and reported the rape, prosecutors said. She also gave the money to the police.

DNA evidence matched that of Stubblefield.

"This was a triumph of resilience," Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen said in a statement. "The victim has struggled her whole life with learning disabilities and challenges to be self-sufficient. If we are not fighting for her, then who are we fighting for?"

Defense attorneys argued that there was no rape and that the woman consented to sex.

Allen Sawyer, one of Stubblefield's trial attorneys, described it as a "paid encounter for sex.'' He said the defense team was precluded from showing the jury strong evidence that would have supported the contention.

"There's a lot of information that we have that the jury was not allowed to have that we think would have been impactful to their decision," Sawyer told the Chronicle on Monday after the verdict was read.

Sawyer said defense attorneys will seek a new trial.

"We expect to keep fighting for Mr. Stubblefield's innocence,'' Sawyer said. "We will clear his name, and we look forward to fighting this out in the courts. This is just the first battle.''

Stubblefield was remanded to jail without bail, pending sentencing.

Stubblefield was the 49ers' first-round pick in 1993 after a career at the University of Kansas. The three-time Pro Bowler played for Washington and Oakland before retiring after the New England Patriots released him before the start of the 2004 season.

Stubblefield pleaded guilty in 2009 to lying to federal officials investigating a performance-enhancing drugs ring catering to professional athletes. He was sentenced to probation after cooperating with investigators.

In 2010, he was sentenced to 90 days in jail after pleading guilty to stealing his former girlfriend's mail by submitting a fraudulent change of address for her to the U.S. Post Office.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.