Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Seven arrests during Brooksville prostitution sting and drug surveillance operation

BROOKSVILLE — Five men have been arrested by the Brooksville Police Department during a prostitution sting dubbed "Operation Valentine's Sweetheart."

The operation ran for eight hours on Saturday, according to the agency, and all of the men arrested approached an undercover female officer and offered money in exchange for sexual acts.

The Valentine's eve sting took place at the corner of West Jefferson Street and Ponce de Leon Boulevard.

One of the suspects, Cecil Penn, 70, was arrested during a similar operation called "Operation Working Woman" in 2008. The same undercover female officer used in that operation was used in "Operation Valentine's Sweetheart" but Penn apparently didn't recognize her, according to police.

Others arrested in the operation were Major Drake, 73; Rafael Morales, 56; Douglas Vezina, 67; and Kenneth Williams, 49.

They each face a misdemeanor charge of prostitution.

This is at least the third major prostitution sting in Brooksville in 17 months, with the first two leading to more than 50 arrests. But the operations have faced some criticism after defense attorneys questioned the legality of the department's methods.

Police Chief George Turner has said one of his priorities is curbing solicitation in the city.

Also, Brooksville police arrested two more people during a drug surveillance operation that was going on at the same time as the prostitution sting. Tawiana Stanley, 23, and Clarence Adams, 30, face charges of driving with a revoked or suspended license.

Adams was also taken into custody on a charge of resisting arrest without violence and battery on a law enforcement officer.

Seven arrests during Brooksville prostitution sting and drug surveillance operation 02/16/10 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 16, 2010 8:02pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Rays exhausted but happy after 15-inning win over Twins (w/video)

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — Before the Rays eventually won Sunday's 6½-hour, 15-inning marathon against the Twins 8-6, they did plenty to lose it. And we need to get that out of the way first.

    The Rays’ Evan Longoria enjoys a laugh after scoring, barely, to tie it in the ninth on Steven Souza Jr.’s two-out single.
  2. Tom Jones' Two Cents: ABC's Indy 500 coverage is stellar again

    TV and Radio

    Times columnist Tom Jones looks back at the best and worst from a weekend of televised sports.

    Best coverage

    Takuma Sato left, celebrates after winning the Indianapolis 500 as Helio Castroneves is a little late passing him. ABC’s coverage of the race is stellar throughout, with plenty of extras but no fake drama.
  3. Takuma Sato surprise winner of wreck-filled Indy 500

    Auto racing

    INDIANAPOLIS — Takuma Sato, a journeyman driver, became the first Japanese winner of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday when he held off three-time champion Helio Castroneves in a 230-mph wheel-rubbing duel to the finish.

    Scott Dixon’s car goes over the top of Jay Howard, soaring so high that Helio Castroneves drove under it while it was airborne. Stunningly, there were no serious injuries.
  4. South Korea military: North Korea fires unidentified projectile


    SEOUL — North Korea launched a ballistic missile early today that flew 280 miles and landed in Japan's exclusive economic zone, the South Korean military and the Japanese government said.

    S. Korean President Moon Jae-in is assessing the launch.
  5. Rays blow lead, rally, blow lead, rally again to beat Twins in 15 (w/video)

    The Heater

    MINNEAPOLIS — The Rays sure made it interesting Sunday, taking an early lead, watching their beleaguered bullpen blow it, rallying to tie in the ninth, battling the Twins to take a lead in the 14th then giving it up again.

    MINNEAPOLIS, MN - MAY 28: Evan Longoria #3 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates scoring a run against the Minnesota Twins during the first inning of the game on May 28, 2017 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) 700010990