State officer arrested, charged over traffic stop

by The Associated Press

A Louisiana Department of Public Safety officer was arrested Sunday on accusations that he groped a woman during a traffic stop.

Authorities say 47-year-old Michael Dayne Selders of Clinton stopped a woman Saturday near the corner of Louisiana 67 and Pride Port Hudson Road in Zachary. The Advocate reported he later told East Baton Rouge Parish sheriff’s investigators it was because she had run a red light.

After making the woman get out of her car, Selders began to grope her and tried to kiss her on the lips, deputies said. She turned away and got back into her car.

Court records show Selders let her leave, saying “don’t tell anyone about this.”

The woman, who was driving home from work, told deputies that Selders was a frequent customer at her place of employment. He got back into his squad car and drove away without calling in the traffic stop as required, deputies said. However the woman called police.

East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s deputies questioned Selders, who said the woman initiated a hug, but denied wrongdoing. Detectives noted inconsistencies in his account. They arrested Selders Sunday, charging him with sexual battery and malfeasance in office.

Selders works for the physical security division of the Department of Public Safety, patrolling the department’s headquarters complex. DPS police are a subset of the Louisiana State Police, according to the agency’s website. But while Selders is a sworn police officer, he’s not a state trooper. A seven-year veteran, he’s on paid administrative leave pending investigation by the state police’s internal affairs unit.

“Our integrity is paramount, and the public demands that everyone who wears a badge is held to a higher standard,” State Police Col. Mike Edmonson said in a written statement.