San Francisco 49ers linebacker Aldon Smith has been charged with illegally possessing three assault weapons he bought in Arizona - including two rifles he allegedly purchased a day before a road football game in Arizona in 2011 during his rookie season.
The three felony counts stem from a raucous party at Smith's house near San Jose last year during which he was stabbed and two people were shot, Santa Clara County prosecutors said Wednesday.
Smith, 24, is expected to surrender this month to face the charges filed in county Superior Court. If convicted, he could face a sentence ranging from no time in custody to four years and four months behind bars, authorities said.
The criminal case is the result of an investigation into a party at his rented home east of San Jose on June 29, 2012.
More than 100 people showed up, but Smith decided to end it after someone brandished a gun at a bartender, prosecutors said. Smith told a group of guests to leave - and was closing his garage door - when someone fired three shots that lodged in the back of the garage, investigators said.
Smith went to a bedroom, retrieved a .45-caliber handgun and fired a shot into the air, authorities said. He reopened the garage door, believing it was safe, but people were still congregating outside.
Prosecutors said that as Smith walked out of the garage, someone uttered a "gang slur," prompting Smith to tell the group, "This is my house. I'm Aldon Smith." But the visitors still did not leave, and some told Smith that they didn't care who he was, authorities said.
A partygoer, Steven Barba, 27, then allegedly used a knife to stab Smith twice. Barba has been charged with assault, gun possession and gang enhancements.
Delanie Walker, a former 49ers tight end who was also at the party, then fired the same .45-caliber handgun into the air, authorities said. Another person returned fire, striking two guests, Ronndale Esporlas and Aaron Reyes, who suffered serious injuries and are now suing Smith and Walker, who now plays for the Tennessee Titans.
As this was going on, someone went into Smith's bedroom, removed an assault weapon and "carried it around the party," investigators said.
After the party, sheriff's deputies searched the home and found five weapons, including four rifles, as well as "several additional large-capacity magazines strewn about the floor of Smith's bedroom." There was expended and unexpended ammunition in a bedside table, authorities said.
None of the five weapons was registered with the state Department of Justice, investigators said, and three rifles were determined to be illegal assault weapons under California law.
Prosecutors described those three guns as an Armalite AR10-T .308-caliber rifle, a Bushmaster ACR chambered for 5.56mm NATO cartridges and a Bushmaster Carbon 15 .223-caliber rifle.......................................