Ziyad Fekri, 21, of Rabat, Morocco has been arrested as a fugitive from justice by the Safe Streets Task Force of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He was charged with second-degree assault, third-degree assault, disorderly conduct and unlawful restraint.
Recently, Fekri earned his bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Mansfield, Tolland County, Connecticut, United States. He is currently pursuing his master’s degree in sport management from the same university and is supposed to graduate in 2022.
Fekri is a member of the university’s soccer team but he has been suspended from the team. On February 15, 2021, a female University of Connecticut student reported to the university’s police department that he assaulted her overnight on February 13, 2021.
After the report, Fekri was arrested, charged with second-degree assault, third-degree assault, disorderly conduct and first-degree unlawful restraint and released on a $75,000 bond. Investigators later found out that he assaulted the victim several times within a month.
In particular, Fekri allegedly pulled the female student’s hair, grabbed her from behind around the neck, punched her in the face with closed fists, cut her with a knife and sexually assaulted her at knifepoint twice. The accusations were corroborated by several witnesses.
On March 26, 2021, the university’s police secured a second warrant for Fekri’s arrest for two counts of aggravated sexual assault and one count of unlawful restraint. However, they could not find him at his university residence.
On March 29, 2021, the FBI found Fekri in Greenburg, Westchester County, New York, USA and took him into custody. He was staying there with friends, NBC Connecticut has learned.
The suspect is expected to be extradited back to Connecticut. His bond was set at $500,000.
“Federal student privacy laws prevent UConn from discussing whether a conduct review has been initiated involving specific student(s),” the University of Connecticut said in a statement obtained by WFSB. “Those reviews are necessary before the University could consider whether to implement permanent disciplinary actions, including expulsion. UConn can take interim steps during the disciplinary process to restrict a student’s participation in campus life and activities, including prohibiting a person from UConn property.”