The 24-year-old US Marine veteran Daniel Penny, who protected himself and others on a New York Subway, has surrendered to police to face a felony second-degree manslaughter charge.
Penny placed Jordan Neely in a chokehold after the man threatened passengers on the train. Neely, who has a violent history, died after the incident.
“We cannot provide any additional information until he has been arraigned in Manhattan Criminal Court, which we expect to take place (Friday),” a spokesperson for the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office said Thursday.
Penny’s attorneys said they are confident he will be “fully absolved of any wrongdoing” and said he risked his life for others on the subway on May 1.
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“When Mr. Penny, a decorated Marine veteran, stepped in to protect himself and his fellow New Yorkers, his well-being was not assured,” the law firm of Raiser and Kenniff, PC, said in a statement. “He risked his own life and safety, for the good of his fellow passengers. The unfortunate result was the unintended and unforeseen death of Mr. Neely.”
“Neely had a documented history of violent and erratic behavior, the apparent result of ongoing and untreated mental illness,” the statement from attorneys Steven Raiser and Thomas Kenniff said.
“When Mr. Neely began aggressively threatening Daniel Penny and 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.”
They also faulted city authorities for not being more proactive in keeping people like Neely from threatening everyday subway passengers.
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“For too long, those suffering from mental illness have been treated with indifference,” the lawyers added.
“We hope that out of this awful tragedy will come a new commitment by our elected officials to address the mental health crisis on our streets and subways.”
Retired New York Police Department Lt. John Macari, who now does a podcast called “The Finest Unfiltered,” which is about the NYPD, also told Fox News on Saturday that Neely’s death points to a failure in public safety.
“You have people commuting on a train who have to deal with mentally ill people who are a danger to themselves and others,” Macari said. “But there are no cops on the subway platform — even though the NYPD has a larger budget than some countries in the world.”
The medical examiner has ruled Neely’s death a homicide, and Penny was taken into custody and released.
Neely, meanwhile, had at least 42 arrests, including at least four for assault. He was wanted for an active warrant for an assault from 2021, when he died.
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