ELKHART — A plea agreement could be reached in the case against Kevin Bronson. The final date to enter a plea agreement and the date of the trial has been reset by the court.
The final date for a plea agreement and/or status conference was set for 12:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 1, however, a day after Special Judge Evan S. Roberts sent out a reminder of the hearing, the state filed a “notice on status conference.” That date has now been changed to March 17.
The trial, originally set to begin Dec. 13, has been reset for April 11-13 and continuing April 18-21. The trial will be held in Kosciusko Circuit Court.
Special Prosecuting Attorney E. Nelson Chipman Jr., filed the notice Nov. 23. The notice references a jury trial in Marshall County that was to begin Nov. 29, in which he and Chief Deputy Prosecutor Tami Napier would be involved and it is unknown if one or both would be able to attend the status conference. Chipman also noted no other deputy prosecutor in his office was sufficiently familiar with the case to be of value should the status conference be held.
Chipman’s notice states he is “confident a plea agreement is forthcoming between the state of Indiana and Mr. Bronson, with the precise timing of submitting such an agreement crucial to the trial of related cases.”
On that same day documents show a telephonic status conference was conducted. The conference was between Roberts, Chipman, Napier and Bronson’s attorney Peter Todd. The parties agreed the final status conference date and plea bargain deadline would be reset for 12:30 p.m. March 17, in the courtroom of Elkhart Superior Court No. 1. Also agreed was the resetting of the jury trial. Documents show this jury trial would be held in conjunction with Mark Soto’s jury trial.
Bronson has been charged with three counts of corrupt business influence, all C felonies and seven counts of intimidation, all D or level 5 felonies. Bronson is being held in the Elkhart County Detention Facility.
The jury trial of C. Aaron Rovenstine is still scheduled for Feb. 7-10 and continuing Feb. 14-15. The court set 1 p.m. Jan. 26 as the final date for a plea bargain and/or status conference.