Court upholds competency ruling in 1997 kidnapping case

HARTFORD — The state Appellate Court has upheld a ruling that a Connecticut man convicted of kidnapping his wife nearly two decades ago was competent to represent himself at his trial.

The Journal Inquirer reports the court this week upheld the Hartford Superior Court judge’s ruling in the case of 51-year-old Jeffrey Connor.

While Connor awaited trial, judges had ruled that he was feigning mental illness and was competent to stand trial. The appeals court cited support for those conclusions.

Connor was convicted in 2006 of forcing his way into his wife’s car in East Hartford in 1997 and driving her as far as Berlin, where she escaped.

His case was sent back to the judge after a U.S. Supreme Court decision allowed states to set higher competency standards for self-representation.