NFL pat-downs extended for extra security
(AP, ABC7) - The NFL says it has "enhanced" its pat-down procedure for fans entering stadiums to improve safety.
The league has asked all 32 teams to have stadium security search fans from the ankles to the knees. Previously, fans were patted down from the waist up for banned items such as alcohol and weapons.
Lendwood Gales said he doesn’t like the implication that each fan is a potential danger.
“It's insulting at the same time because a lot of people who go to the stadium don't come for any altercations, we just come to watch the game,” said Gales of District Heights.
Others accept the extra security as necessary.
“There's a lot of things going on, 9/11 just passed, terrorists, and you have to get pat down,” said James Mayweather of Glenarden.
Last week, a man was arrested for using an illegal stun gun at Sunday night's Dallas Cowboys-New York Jets game.
NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said Friday the "enhanced security procedures" are not a result of any specific threat, but the league is "always refining and improving" security.
The new procedures will likely cause longer lines for the 16.6 million expected to attend games this season. McCarthy encourages fans to arrive early.
Fans can refuse a patdown, but the league can refuse to let them into the stadium.
“I don't particularly like it, but if it's for our safety I'm used to it. I'm used to getting pat down already when you go to the Redskins stadium,” said Jill Santucci of Annapolis.