After four years of legal skirmishes, former Bush administration lawyer John Michael Farren is due to stand trial in June on charges of attempted murder and assault in connection with accusations he beat his wife nearly to death.
The Advocate of Stamford reports that jury selection is set to begin May 27 and testimony will start June 17.
The 60-year-old Farren was ordered to turn over to prosecutors every report on potential witnesses on his behalf. Farren is representing himself and has pleaded not guilty. He has sought help from the public defender’s office because he claims his wife, Mary Margaret Farren, took all his money in a civil lawsuit. He had previously been represented by criminal defense attorney Eugene Riccio of Bridgeport.
Mary Margaret Farren won a $28.6 million judgment against Farren in December for the injuries she suffered in the Jan. 6, 2010, attack.
John Michael Farren is a former White House lawyer for President George W. Bush and general counsel for Xerox Corp. His former wife is a former associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. Mary Farren claims that one day in in 2010, after she served John Michael Farren with divorce papers, he hit her with a metal flashlight, pulled strands of hair out of her head and put his hands around her neck and strangled her until she passed out in the couple’s New Canaan home.
In the civil trial, Farren was liable for assault and battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
John Michael Farren represented himself in the civil case, but he did not appear during the trial to defend himself or cross-examine his wife’s witnesses. As the trial was starting, Farren sent an email to the court saying he had entered a Hartford-area hospital but giving no reason for his hospitalization.
According to published reports, Farren has undergone psychiatric evaluations in an effort to determine whether was legally insane at the time of the attack. A dispute over who would pay for the evaluation is partly to blame for the slow pace of the criminal proceedings.