Former East Baton Rouge registrar arrested in Livingston Parish, accused of impersonating a peace officer _lowres

Nat Bankston

The former East Baton Rouge Parish registrar of voters was arrested Monday night and accused of impersonating a law enforcement officer and drug possession.

Nat Bankston, 67, called authorities in Livingston Parish and told them he made a traffic stop of another vehicle that he claims passed his vehicle, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

A deputy responded to the scene, where Bankston had ordered the other driver to turn off his engine and had taken his identification. Lights were flashing on Bankston’s car, the deputy wrote.

The former registrar was wearing an FBI hat and FBI citizens’ academy shirt and had law enforcement commissions from the East and West Baton Rouge parish sheriffs’ offices. He also had “special operations” credentials from the Department of Justice, though none of the law enforcement credentials were legitimate, according to the affidavit and a news release issued by the Livingston Parish Sheriff’s Office.

In Bankston’s vehicle, the actual deputy found a prescription pill bottle containing alprazolam belonging to another person, the affidavit states.

Deputies removed emergency lights and sirens from Bankston’s vehicle and released the driver the former registrar had stopped, the release states.

Bankston was booked into the Livingston Parish Detention Center on one count each of false impersonation of a peace officer and possession of a Schedule IV controlled dangerous substance, according to online jail records. As of Wednesday afternoon, he was still being held on $35,000 bond.

Bankston served as registrar of voters in East Baton Rouge Parish for several decades, retiring in 2002.