Former Missoula attorney pleads 'no contest' to making Facebook threat against judge

A Montana attorney has pleaded no contest to a misdemeanor for making threats against a judge in an apparent ploy to get the judge to recuse herself from his civil case.

Prosecutors say a different judge ultimately took over Ronald Marc Klotzer's civil lawsuit against a construction company, but he was also ordered to forfeit his Montana law license because of the plea.

Klotzer was initially charged with a felony for threatening District Judge Karen Townsend on his Facebook page. Court records say a friend worried about Klotzer's mental state showed police Klotzer's statements threatening to hurt Townsend and damage her house.

On Wednesday, Klotzer pleaded no contest to misdemeanor privacy in communications. Justice of the Peace Karen Orzech gave him a deferred sentence.