STAMFORD, Conn. -- A New Canaan woman testified Monday about the near-fatal beating she endured at the hands of her husband as his attempted murder trial opened at Stamford Superior Court, according to the Stamford Advocate .
Mary Margaret Farren, 47, testified for over an hour about the brutal beating by her then-husband, former White House counsel J. Michael Farren, on Jan. 6 2010, in their New Canaan mansion two days after she served him with divorce papers, the Advocate said.
J. Michael Farren, 61, is charged with attempted murder, first-degree assault and risk of injury to a child but is not attending his trial . Farren is facing a 50-year prison sentence if found guilty on all counts.
Mary Farren testified that her husband strangled her, slammed her head onto the floor and beat her face with a metal flashlight, the Advocate reported.
"I felt like I was dying. I was in incredible pain," the Advocate quoted her as saying in her testimony.
She also described in her testimony how she fled the house with her two young daughters after escaping her husband, the Advocate said.
Mary Farren was awarded $28.6 million in damages for the attack in a civil trial in December.