Jury selection begins for Waterford man charged with choking woman, threatening her with a gun

Sept. 8—Jury selection started Tuesday in the case of David G. Willox, a 27-year-old Waterford man fighting felony charges for allegedly assaulting, choking and using a firearm to threaten a woman he was dating.

An 8-member jury is being picked in New London Superior Court, where Willox faces charges of second-degree assault with a weapon, first-degree unlawful restraint, first-degree threatening with a firearm and interfering with an emergency call in the 2018 incident in Waterford.

Willox previously rejected a state offer to serve a two-year prison sentence and three years of probation in exchange for a guilty plea in the case. He now faces up to 26 years if convicted at trial.

State prosecutors had additionally offered Willox a 10-year-prison sentence with five years of probation to settle all four of his pending cases, one of which is an attempted rape that allegedly occurred in Groton while the Waterford domestic violence case was pending.

The charges in the Waterford case are connected to a complaint from a woman who claims that on June 21, 2018 she was at Willox’s home and she became upset when she found Willox had used her phone to send screen shots to his own phone.

When she confronted him, the unidentified victim claims Willox grabbed her around the neck, called her slurs and told her, “you’re going to die,” according to an arrest warrant in the case. The victim claims Willox then grabbed a handgun from a dresser, pointed the gun at her while still choking her and hit the gun against her forehead. He then pulled the slide of the gun back, called her more slurs and told her again he was going to kill her.

After breaking free, the victim was able to call her mother, who picked her up. The victim said Willox had been violent with her in the past and the two had an on-again, off-again relationship over five years.

The victim reported the incident to the police on July 12, 2018. When asked why she waited so long to contact the police, the police said the victim said she believed Willox was on probation and that he would likely be arrested and his probation violated.

“Victim #1 said she cared about Willox and did not want to see that happen to him. Victim #1 had been seeking therapy and has spoken to family members who urged her to make the report,” police said.

Court records indicate Willox was not on probation but did have a pending case from an arrest on July 9, 2017 when he was charged with fourth-degree sexual assault and disorderly conduct. He has pleaded not guilty to those charges.

Willox was free on bail in the domestic violence case when he was arrested by Groton Town police in the early morning hours of Aug. 22, 2019. A Ledyard police officer had come upon a vehicle pulled over on North Road in Groton where Willox was allegedly found on top of a woman outside the car on the ground. The woman was in her underwear, crying and disheveled and had a torn shirt.

In an interview with Groton Town police, the woman said she was a hostess at a Mystic bar and had invited Willox back to her home in Ledyard.

The woman, who police said appeared to be under the influence, said that on the way home, Willox told her he had crack cocaine if she wanted to party. During the ride, police said Willox had taken her phone but pretended he didn’t have it.

After pleading for her phone back, she claims Willox threatened her saying “I’m going to rape you,” if she didn’t listen to him, the police wrote in the arrest warrant affidavit.

Willox told police the alleged victim told him to pull onto the dirt road because she lost her phone. He claims they were outside the car because they were looking for the victim’s phone but was unable to explain to the police why he was on top of the victim, police said.

The victim said Willox had pulled over, walked to the passenger side and pulled her out of the car by her hair.

In the Groton case, Willox faces charges of attempted first-degree sexual assault, first-degree unlawful restraint, second-degree reckless endangerment and breach of peace.

Willox is free on a $250,000 bond on his pending cases. Attorney Michael Blanchard, who represents Willox, declined comment. Assistant State’s Attorney Marissa Goldberg is prosecuting the case.

Four jurors were chosen on Tuesday and jury selection is not expected to continue until Sept. 20.

g.smith@theday.com

Leave a Comment