OAN Roy Francis
7:05 AM – Friday, May 12, 2023
Daniel Penny, the Marine veteran who placed Jordan Neely in a chokehold, which resulted in the death of Neely, has turned himself in to authorities and faces one count of manslaughter charge.
On May 3rd, Penny, a 24-year-old Marine veteran, had placed Neely in a chokehold after the homeless man had reportedly been acting erratic, and threatening riders along the subway in New York City.
According to the New York Post, freelance journalist Alberta Vazquez said that Neely, who suffers from mental illness and had over 40 prior arrests, including an outstanding warrant at the time of the incident, had been acting erratic and aggressive, threatening passengers before the Marine decided to take action.
“He started screaming in an aggressive manner,” Vazquez said. “He said he had no food, he had no drink, that he was tired and doesn’t care if he goes to jail. He started screaming all these things, took off his jacket, a black jacket that he had, and threw it on the ground.”
Other witness reports confirm that Neely had been threatening passengers saying “I’m ready to go back to jail” and “ill hurt anyone.”
Penny’s attorney released a statement after the incident which offered “condolences to those close to Mr. Neely,” and said that “Mr. Neely began aggressively threatening Daniel” and that the riders on the subway, including Penny, “acted to protect themselves.”
Neely proceeded to lose consciousness while being subdued by Penny, along with two other passengers who helped hold his arms down, and was then placed in the recovery position by the Marine. When EMTs arrived and were unable to revive him, Neely was then transported to the hospital where he was declared dead.
The Medical Examiner’s office then ruled the death a homicide that was caused by pressure to the neck.
On Thursday night, the law firm of Raiser and Kenniff, which represents Penny, released a statement regarding the incident saying that they “are confident that once all the facts and circumstances surrounding this tragic incident are brought to bear, Mr. Penny will be fully absolved of any wrongdoing.”
“Mr. Neely had a documented history of violent and erratic behavior, the apparent result of ongoing and untreated mental illness,” the statement said. “When Mr. Neely began aggressively threatening Daniel Penny and the other passengers, Daniel, with the help of others, acted to protect themselves, until help arrived. Daniel never intended to harm Mr. Neely and could not have foreseen his untimely death.”
“When Mr. Penny, a decorated Marine veteran, stepped in to protect himself and his fellow New Yorkers, his well-being was not assured. He risked his own life and safety, for the good of his fellow passengers,” the statement went on. “The unfortunate result was the unintended and unforeseen death of Mr. Neely.”
Penny turned himself in to police on Friday morning in Lower Manhattan. The Marine faces a manslaughter charge for the incident.
He is expected to be transported to the Manhattan Criminal Court, and be arraigned at 1:00 p.m. ET.
Penny’s attorney, Tom Kenniff, addressed reporters as he turned himself in.
“Turned himself in here voluntarily and with the sort of dignity and integrity that is characteristic of his dignity of service to this grateful nation,” Kenniff said. “The case will now go to court we expect an arraignment this afternoon. The process will unfold from there.”
A grand jury is set to hear the evidence in the case next week. The maximum penalty for second-degree manslaughter is 15 years.