Las Vegas Sun

March 18, 2019

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Metro officer denies inappropriately touching women at party

The house party was thrown for the Christmas holiday. Members of a Metro Police squad would exchange gifts, and its officers would hand their sergeant a present.

But by the next day, Dec. 22, the Metro supervisor, Sgt. Michael Souder, was fielding questions from detectives about allegations that he inappropriately touched two women, including one of his officers, during the festivities, according to a police report.

On Jan. 16, authorities filed two misdemeanor counts of open or gross lewdness, the report said. Souder, who wasn’t arrested, was summoned to appear in court last week for an arraignment.

The police report, made public today, outlines how the mood of officers and their families at the party went from festive to a sense of shock and ended with officers speaking to detectives afterward.

Alcohol flowed that night at the three-story house, the report said. On the second floor, where most of the celebration took place, beer-pong tables were set up, the report said.

Sometime during the night, a woman was standing in the second-floor kitchen with Souder when he allegedly ran his hand under her dress and touched her, police said. The officers she showed up with reported witnessing the interaction, police said.

An officer alleged that Souder grabbed her hips from behind, began touching her and pulled her underwear before another officer — a resident of the house — stepped in and pulled her away, police said. The alleged incident also occurred in the kitchen, police said.

After conducting interviews the next day, when the allegations were reported, detectives contacted Souder, police said.

When they spoke to him at his house, Souder said it was the first time he had heard about the allegations, police said. He said he didn’t touch anyone inappropriately, but “if he did, which he didn’t, he had zero recollection of doing that,” the report said.

He admitted to drinking alcohol, but not a lot, police said.

“He stated that he got real drunk and real sick towards the end of the night,” the report said. “He stated he didn’t drink that much, he had not eaten all day, and worked all day.”

Souder’s attorney could not be reached for comment with an after-hours phone call today.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 14, court records show.