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2 Panthers' cheerleaders arrested

Published November 7, 2005

Renee Thomas initially gave police another name
Angela Keathley

TAMPA - Two Carolina Panthers' cheerleaders were arrested early Sunday after a confrontation with other nightclub customers and police.

The trouble started, a police report said, after the women tied up a restroom while allegedly having sex with each other at Banana Joe's in the Channelside plaza.

"That is the allegation, but I don't know the particulars of what they were doing in there," said Tampa police spokeswoman Laura McElroy. "That's what the witnesses said they were doing."

Other customers got angry at having to wait and started pounding on the restroom door, police said.

One cheerleader, who identified herself as Kristin Owen, came out of the restroom and punched another woman in the face, police said.

However, McElroy said, by Sunday night police no longer thought the woman they accused of battery was Owen. They thought she was Renee Thomas, another Panthers cheerleader.

Also arrested was Angela Keathley, 26, who was charged with disorderly conduct and obstructing an officer without violence, McElroy said.

The women were released on bail Sunday.

The cheerleaders made the trip to Tampa on their own - the squad is on the sideline only at home games.

--Information from the Charlotte Observer was used in this report. Rick Gershman can be reached at or 813 226-3431.

[Last modified November 7, 2005, 04:55:39]

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