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Bat invasion shuts down building

SADIEVILLE, Ky. (WKYT) - The old jail here in Sadieville's got a problem.

"It was just right on the wall," said Police Chief Bobby Bruner, pointing to where he'd seen a bat hanging.

Bats have taken over the space that was, until recently the Sadieville Police Station. Chief Bruner said when he was still working here, he could hear them.

"I would hear sounds up there, but I would think it was a bird or a squirrel going across the roof," he said.

But when he discovered a dead bat floating in the toilet, he knew what he was dealing with.

"Then it was confirmed that I did have bats!" he exclaimed.

About a month and a half ago, Chief Bruner moved his one-man police department to a new building. Since then, the bat problem has really piled up.

"The stench in here is just...unbelievable," said Chief Bruner, as he looked over piles of bat droppings in a hall. It's not just a nuisance, it's a health concern.

"The danger is it's a lung disease, histoplasmosis, from the droppings that you can get," said Chief Bruner.

Some people in Sadieville want to turn this 110-year-old building into a museum, but the chief said first they have to fix the bat problem.

"Every time someone comes here, they want to know where the old jail is and we show it to them," he said.

Before they can open it as a museum, a contractor has to plug holes in the building and make sure there are no bats left inside. Chief Bruner said he'd leave that job up to someone else. City commissioners hope to start renovations next spring.

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