REGIONAL BRIEFS: Methadone clinic faces fineDULUTH -- Already facing revocation of its license, the only methadone treatment center in northeastern Minnesota has been slapped with an $800 fine for continued licensing violations.
From the Forum Communications News Bureau
Doctor cleared of sex assault charges
FARGO – After a two-week trial filled with graphic testimony and salacious allegations, Jon Norberg emerged from a Cass County courtroom on Wednesday acquitted on charges accusing him of drugging and sexually assaulting his wife – and his sights set on getting his medical license restored.
The jury deliberated for less than four hours in Cass County District Court before returning the verdict at about 1:05 p.m.
Norberg, 42, had faced a lifetime prison term if convicted of the Class AA felony charge of gross sexual imposition, as well as five years in prison if convicted of reckless endangerment, a Class C felony. Jurors found him not guilty on both charges as well as lesser charges on each count that they were required to consider.
Alonna Norberg, his wife, had accused him in four instances of injecting her with the powerful sedative propofol or using the ether-like substance sevoflurane on her without her knowledge and sexually assaulting her while she was unaware.
The defense argued that Alonna Norberg, who also is a doctor, made up the allegations against her husband because she wanted custody of their children as part of a still-pending divorce and knew she wouldn’t get custody because of her dependency on prescription drugs and other issues.
Man killed in hit-and-run
DICKINSON, N.D. -- The Dickinson Police Department has identified the victim of a hit and run that took place near Villard on Wednesday as 47-year-old Tracy Freer of Dickinson, according to a press release.
DPD was called to the Queen City Motel parking lot at about 1 a.m.
He was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital and Health Center where he died.
Belcourt felon sentenced for possessing gun
FARGO -- Michael W. Gourneau, 32, of Belcourt, N.D., was sentenced on Monday for being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition, said the office of the U.S. Attorney for North Dakota.
The judge sentenced him to serve two years and nine months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release.
He was arrested Dec. 13 after Bureau of Indian Affairs officers responded to a report of gunfire at a home in Shell Valley Housing in Belcourt. They discovered he had verbally threatened people in the home and fired a .357 Magnum revolver into the floor, causing damage to a water line.
Gorneau was previously convicted in 2008 of corruption or solicitation of a minor in Ward County, N.D.; a controlled substance crime in the fifth degree in Polk County, Minn.; and failure to appear in court there.
Fatal accident forces detour
CLARA CITY, Minn. — A fatal accident east of Clara City on Wednesday created a detour on state Highway 23.
The Minnesota State Patrol reported the crash was between a tanker truck and a pickup about 3 miles east of Clara City. It was reported at 4:41 p.m. The report did not have any details about the drivers or specifics about the crash.
Traffic on Highway 23 was being detoured on gravel roads east of Clara City.
Methadone clinic faces fine
DULUTH -- Already facing revocation of its license, the only methadone treatment center in northeastern Minnesota has been slapped with an $800 fine for continued licensing violations.
A certified letter sent by the Minnesota Department of Human Services to the Lake Superior Treatment Center’s parent company in Florida on Nov. 16 cited excessive caseloads and violations of treatment-plan requirements based on inspections beginning Oct. 1.
The investigator “determined that the Lake Superior Treatment Center continues to violate chemical dependency treatment licensing requirements,” the letter stated.
It states the fine will be stayed if the clinic requests a “contested case hearing.”
A woman who answered the phone at the clinic said the program director would not comment to the media.
E-mails requesting comments from executives of the parent company, Colonial Management Group of Orlando, Fla., were not answered by Wednesday’s deadline.