Warrant out for ex-AL city manager

Published 3:30 pm Monday, March 16, 2015

Norman says he was not notified of hearing

A Freeborn County District Court judge issued a warrant last week for former Albert Lea City Manager Jim Norman.

Norman, 61, was slated to appear in court March 4 for a hearing on an alleged probation violation but did not attend the hearing, according to online court records. Freeborn County District Court Judge Ross Leuning subsequently issued the warrant on March 9.

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Norman on Friday said via email he was told he was supposed to have a court date set for a probation violation hearing, but he did not receive the notice or there was some type of mail mix-up.

“I would not have missed the hearing if I was aware of it,” Norman said.

He noted he has asked for a copy of the mailing.

A 12-member jury in May 2011 found Norman guilty of five counts of permitting false claims against government by a public officer, one count of theft by swindle and one count of misconduct by a public officer. Norman had misused the city-issued credit card for personal purchases, specifically charging more than $2,000 during his first few months as city manager in 2010.

A district judge sentenced Norman to 90 days of electronic home monitoring and five years of probation, in addition to performing 100 hours of community service. He appealed, asking for the convictions to be overturned and a new trial. He is on probation through June 2016.

The three appellate judges sustained permitting false claims against government by a public officer and the theft by swindle but reversed Norman’s gross misdemeanor conviction of misconduct by a public officer.

Court records state there was at least one other probation violation in 2013. The most recent violation hearing was to address a failure to remain law-abiding.