Frat President Assaults, Chokes Prospective Member In CT During Initiation, Police Say

The 23-year-old president of a University of Connecticut fraternity faces charges after allegedly assaulting and choking a prospective new member during his initiation process, police announced.

David Vallejo of Willington, age 23. 

David Vallejo of Willington, age 23. 

Photo Credit: Connecticut State Police

Tolland County resident David Vallejo of Willington was arrested on Friday, May 3 on charges connected to his alleged assault of a potential new fraternity member during his initiation process, Connecticut State Police announced on Tuesday, May 7.

According to Vallejo's arrest warrant, the events leading to the arrest began in early February 2024, when the victim, a University of Connecticut student, decided to join an unnamed fraternity and begin the initiation process.

On Thursday, Feb. 8, the victim was picked up by Vallejo along with another applicant and brought to a residence on Tolland Turnpike in Willington. There, the applicants went inside the house and were lined up "military-style" before pledge masters had them recite back what they were saying. 

However, the applicants kept making mistakes while reciting what they said, prompting the Pledge Masters to force them to do push-ups. At this point, the victim began experiencing exhaustion, and their arms soon gave out. This led to Vallejo yelling at the victim and eventually throwing them against a wall, according to the warrant. 

Once the victim stood back up, Vallejo also allegedly pressed his right forearm against their throat and kept yelling at them, causing the victim to start crying, the warrant read. 

When the victim got home that night, they noticed bruising on their arms, elbows, and kneecaps, according to the arrest warrant. 

The next day after this alleged incident, Friday, Feb. 9, the victim was again put through a similar ordeal and was made to do push-ups until their arms gave out. After this, Vallejo again threw them against the wall and choked them, the warrant stated. 

After this second incident, the victim told Vallejo they were no longer interested in becoming a fraternity member and would not pay the remaining initiation fee. When the victim returned their uniform to Vallejo on Thursday, March 21, they were again assaulted on the UConn campus, according to the warrant.

After the victim reported these events to police, authorities contacted Vallejo on Monday, April 15 and asked him to come in for an interview. However, Vallejo instead stated he wanted to consult a lawyer. 

Vallejo is now charged with: 

  • Disorderly conduct;
  • Third-degree assault;
  • Third-degree strangulation;
  • Second-degree unlawful restraint.

After his arrest, Vallejo was released on a cash bond of $30,000. He will appear in court on Tuesday, May 21 at 9 a.m. 

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