Protesters suspend selves from stadium during Panthers game

Activists protesting Bank of America’s financing of a liquefied natural gas facility in Maryland suspended themselves from the upper deck of Bank of America Stadium during the Panthers Monday Night Football game.

The protesters were arrested just after 11 p.m. Police had not released their identities.

[Update: Protest at BofA stadium went ‘fantastically well,’ spokeswoman for demonstrators says.]

[UPDATE: 4 arrested after protesters rappel from BofA Stadium during Panthers game.]

The protesters dropped a banner reading “BoA: Dump Dominion” and a link to the protest’s website. BoA is an abbreviation for Bank of America, the Charlotte-based bank that owns the naming rights to the Panthers’ stadium.

“Bank of America is allowing companies like Dominion (Resources) to operate without checks and balances,” said John Nicholson, a spokesman quoted in a press release of the organization named We Are Cove Point. “They are giving money directly to Dominion with full knowledge of the health and safety risks of building an LNG export facility, and they need to be accountable to that.”

The protesters – a man and a woman wearing full rappelling gear – climbed down during the third quarter in front of the press box.

Firefighters and police officers converged on the scene, and stadium officials cleared out the section just below as a precaution. No injuries were reported.

“They’re obviously causing a significant disturbance,” one television commentator said as cameras panned to the emptied section and the police activity. “I think they’re going to be doing their hanging out somewhere else pretty soon.”

Representatives for Bank of America couldn’t be reached late Monday. The Panthers released a statement early Tuesday saying it is working with CMPD to investigate the incident.

Cleve R. Wootson Jr.: 704-358-5046, @CleveWootson

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