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Prosecutor: Norgaard stabbed COCC roommate 14 times

Norgaard's attorney seeks insanity verdict

Norgaard trial gets underway

BEND, Ore. - A long-awaited trial got underway Tuesday afternoon for former Central Oregon Community College student Eric Norgaard, accused of stabbing his roommate, James Briles, 14 times in October 2014.

Norgaard faces charges including attempted murder, first-degree assault and unlawful use of a weapon. The trial before Deschutes County Circuit Judge Michael Adler is expected to last about four days.

Norgaard showed no emotion when he heard the gruesome details of the attempted murder as the trial began.

"He (Briles) heard Mr. Norgaard get up again in his dorm room, he didn't think anything about it -- and next thing you knew Mr. Norgaard was behind him and leaning over his shoulders, and he (Briles) heard him say 'I'm sorry.', Deputy District Attorney Brandi Shroyer told the jury.

The prosecution told the jury Norgaard stabbed Briles 14 times. The victim received injuries to his head, back and neck.

Both of Briles lungs collapsed. He was taken to a Bend hospital and stayed there for about six days, Shroyer said.

According to the prosecutor, Norgaard used Briles' hunting knife with a four-inch blade to stab him. They presented photos of the victim's injuries and the jurors also heard from students who tried to help Briles that night.

Bend Police Sgt. Ron Taylor was one of the first to arrive on scene. Taylor described seeing blood all over the dorm room and hallway.

Taylor testified he saw Briles on the floor, not moving, his clothing soaked in blood.

Todd Grover, Norgaard's attorney, told the jury his client heard voices and tried to commit suicide three times before he enrolled as a student at COCC.

Grover said Norgaard was not mentally stable when he committed the crime, and he pleaded with the jury to return a verdict of insanity.

In May, an undisclosed settlement was reached in a $3 million civil lawsuit filed against COCC by Briles.

Briles claimed the college failed to provide a new roommate when Norgaard began showing bizarre behavior.

The trial is set to resume Wednesday morning, with the prosecution presenting the audio of investigators' interrogation of Norgaard.


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