RFK Stadium General Manager Jim Dalrymple said yesterday that stadium officials have no plans to alter their policy on beer sales at D.C. United games, and that United General Manager Kevin Payne has not requested such a change. Payne did say the club might ask stadium officials to change those policies for United's game against the Tampa Bay Mutiny here Oct. 6.
Payne said he and Dalrymple discussed the stabbing that occurred in the stands during United's game Sunday against Tampa Bay and the overall security in the stadium.
The deployment of security personnel was altered for Sunday's game because of problems that occurred the last time Mutiny striker Raul Diaz Arce played at RFK Stadium. Diaz Arce, a Salvadoran, played for United in 1996 and '97, and his trade to New England was unpopular in the area's Latin American community. He played here earlier this season as a member of the San Jose Clash, which acquired him from New England and traded him to Tampa Bay.
"Obviously, this was a horrible incident and we are going to do everything we can to prevent anything like this from happening," Payne said. "But I thought our security plan worked very well. There were very few incidents, and there is no clear evidence to suggest that alcohol was the reason this happened.
"But we will always be trying to make the environment as safe as possible for our fans, so there is a chance we may modify the beer sales when Tampa comes back, but that has not been decided yet."
Stadium officials control concessions sales for United games. Payne said they adopted a new policy for beer sales at the beginning of this season. Concessions stands stop selling beer when the second half begins, and roving vendors are permitted to pick up one case of beer at that time, Dalrymple said.
"Once that last case runs out, that's it," he said. "They cannot go back and get more. Usually by 15 minutes into the second half, no more beer is available in the stadium."
Sergio Senteno, 27, of Arlington, remained in stable condition yesterday at D.C. General Hospital after having surgery for stab wounds to his lower back and abdomen.