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Forum staff reports, Published December 02 2011

Bail reduced for doctor accused in rape case

FARGO – Bail for a 41-year-old Fargo surgeon accused of raping a woman he had rendered unconscious with propofol was amended from $50,000 to $5,000 on Thursday.

John Goff, attorney for Jon Norberg, argued that the cost of the surgeon’s criminal defense, his ongoing divorce and his defense against disciplinary action by the state Board of Medical Examiners created a financial need for a lower bail amount.

Norberg, who is on voluntary leave from Sanford Health, is not currently receiving any income, Goff said.

Assistant State’s Attorney Gary Euren argued against the bail reduction because of the severity of the charges against Norberg.

Judge Douglas Herman agreed to reduce the size of Norberg’s bail in a hearing Thursday in Cass County District Court.

Norberg had posted the original $50,000 bail – stiffer than either the prosecution or the defense requested – immediately following his first court appearance in August.

Norberg has pleaded not guilty and is next scheduled to appear in court on Jan. 3.