Trooper charged with assault after traffic stop

RED RIVER PARISH, LA (KSLA) - A trooper with the Louisiana State Police faces charges related to a traffic stop involving a judge.

Trooper Eric Schonfarber, a 14-year-veteran who works out of Troop G in Bossier City, turned himself in to the Red River Parish Sheriff's Office after warrants were issued for his arrest. He's charged with simple battery, aggravated assault and false imprisonment. Schonfarber was released on bond and is now on paid administrative leave.

According to State Police Superintendent Col. Mike Edmonson, the incident in question happened last month at the Red River Parish courthouse when Schonfarber pulled over Judge Lewis Sams for a traffic violation.

"We don't know precisely what happened after our trooper stopped the judge for not wearing a seatbelt, but we're going to find out.  As soon as we learned that a confrontation between the trooper and the judge had occurred, we began an internal administrative inquiry.  We hope to wrap that investigation soon and will share our findings.  If those findings deem further action on our part, we'll do what is necessary and appropriate," Edmonson said.

At the time of the incident, Schonfarber was in a police vehicle that was not equipped with a recording device, so there's no video of the incident.

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