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Man pleads guilty to making threats to judicial facility

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By Thomas Barr

 SHEPHERDSVILLE - On a bright sunny Monday in October 2013, Robert J. Pronovost II had plenty of things he wanted to do.

But one of them was not to go to prison.

So, instead, he called into Bullitt County Central Dispatch on Oct. 21 and said that there was a weapon of mass destruction in the judicial center or the sheriff’s office.

For a second time in a matter of months, buildings in the courthouse square were shut down and employees evacuated.

On Thursday, Pronovost entered a guilty plea for his involvement in the incident.

Pronovost, 30, of Shepherdsville, entered guilty pleas to terroristic threatening. Other charges were dismissed.

Under the agreement with prosecutor Michael Mann, Pronovost would receive a nine-year prison sentence.

Mann would also object to probation.

He would not have any objection to having Pronovost assessed for participation in the Bullitt County Drug Court program.

Before conditionally accepting the plea, Bullitt Circuit Judge Rodney Burress wanted the defendant to explain why he made such a threat.

Pronovost said he went to a gas station and called Central Dispatch.

He was trying to avoid going to court that day because he going to be sentenced to one year in prison for possession of a controlled substance.

That would be added to a five-year felony on which his probation would be revoked. Pronovost would then be serving a six-year sentence.

He said he was under the influence at the time he made the call.

“It wasn’t my best judgment,” said Pronovost.

He told Burress that he had a very serious drug problem with heroin and methamphetamine being his biggest weaknesses.

When he is using drugs, Pronovost admitted that he did “very stupid things”. He also said that he used heroin daily, if possible.

Burress said he would allow an evaluation to be done for inclusion in the drug court program; however, he wasn’t sure if Pronovost’s actions didn’t cross the line.

The judge said that hundreds of individuals were put in danger because of Pronovost’s threat.

Final sentencing has been set for April 7 at 1 p.m.

Pronovost remains in the Bullitt County Detention Center.