Packers fan claims death threats after reporting banner stolen b - | WBTV Charlotte

Packers fan claims death threats after reporting banner stolen by Cam Newton

Fan banner that Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton ripped down before the game Jonathan Jones via Twitter Fan banner that Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton ripped down before the game Jonathan Jones via Twitter
CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

A North Carolina-based Packers fan says he's now getting death threats after he reported his banner stolen after Carolina Panthers' quarterback Cam Newton took it down before Sunday's game.

Mike Dobs, an Army veteran who lives in Fayetteville, told the Charlotte Observer on Monday that Newton ran up and snatched the banner “out of our hands” before the start of Sunday’s Panthers game against the Packers in Charlotte.

The Panthers would go on to win, 37-29, extending the team’s win record to 8-0.

Dobs says he reported the incident to police as a theft and said he expects the Panthers to “make it right.”  Since that report, he's now getting angry messages, even death threats.

"We thought it was joke at first, but he never came back with the banner," Dobs told the Observer. "That's when I went to security and told them he stole it. The first officer I talked to just laughed."

A photo of the incident was captured on camera by other fans and then tweeted out.

Dobs, a recent candidate for Fayetteville City Council, said Monday he has received at least one threatening phone call and some threats via the internet from people who think he’s fishing for money from the Panthers or Cam Newton.

He says the team promised Sunday that he would be compensated in some way, but he wasn't sure what that meant. The banner cost $500, and was new, having just been purchased in January, he said.

“It’s not about money. I just want my sign back,” said Dobs, 50, noting security at the stadium told him Newton “tore it up in the locker room.”

Dobs told WBTV Monday afternoon that Panthers President Jerry Richardson apologized and promised him a new banner.

Dobs said he kept the banner in his "man cave" at his home and got permission from the Panthers to display it during the game, just to make sure it wouldn't be confiscated. Dobs said he hoped his grandchildren would be able to easily spot their family on television with the banner.

Banners are allowed in Bank of America stadium, but must comply with various NFL guidelines, which include not affixing it to the railings. The Panthers said on their website Monday they were reviewing that policy.

The website also answered several questions about the policy review.

Dobs told the Observer the trip to Charlotte was his first and was part of a family vacation that included a stay at the Westin hotel in uptown Charlotte. The tickets alone cost the family $3,700, he added.

“I followed all the rules. I got pre-approval to have that banner and look what it got me. We were shocked. When Cam ran up, we thought he was going to talk to us, or even sign our banner. But instead he ripped it out of our hands and almost took my son-in-law’s finger with it.

“I’d like an apology from Can Newton for one thing.”

The NFL says Newton didn't violate any league policies, saying he didn't actually go into the stands to get the banner.

Newton admitted to grabbing the banner and explained that he felt it was disrespectful to Panthers fans and their home, Bank of America Stadium.

“It just doesn’t match,” Newton told reporters after the game. “I was passing, the sign was dangling. Either somebody was going to have to take it off or I’d take it off. And it’s no disrespect to nobody, it’s more of a respect to the stadium.”

The Wisconsin native said he says he and his wife of 32-years, Chris, have made it a tradition to take at least one vacation a year centered around an NFL game. Dobs is retired Army, but works at Fort Bragg, running the site’s Green Beret operations course.

Copyright 2015 WBTV. The Charlotte Observer contributed to this report. All rights reserved.

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