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Storm player accused of soliciting sex

Tampa Bay Storm defensive back Corey Dowden was arrested Thursday on a charge of soliciting sex from a police officer posing as a prostitute, police said.

Corey Dowden, 24, was booked in the Pinellas County Jail in lieu of $500 bail. Dowden, a 5-foot-10, 190-pound defensive specialist, was one of 10 men arrested as city police continued a crackdown on prostitution.

"You wonder what some of these people are thinking," said police spokesman Bill Doniel. "If you solicit somebody in the city of St. Petersburg, there's a very good chance that person is a police officer and you will be arrested."

Dowden and his 22-year-old roommate, Percy C. Landry, were arrested after they pulled up to an undercover police officer posing as a prostitute at Fourth Street and 13th Avenue N, police said. They said the two men offered to pay the officer $20 to perform oral sex.

Storm officials could not be reached for comment.

Thursday's crackdown was the second this week as police continued their efforts to wipe out prostitution, particularly in residential areas. Police decoys strolled along Fourth Street N, Fourth Street S and 34th Street N waiting for "johns," the term prostitutes use for their clients.

In addition to Dowden and Landry, eight other men were arrested, including a Baptist minister from Arcadia.

Dowden, a native of New Orleans, is a lineman with 4.38-second speed in the 40. He has about a year of arenaball experience and joined the Storm in the middle of the 1992 season. He was a starter by the fifth game. He is a 1991 graduate of Tulane.