Man Who Choked Mentally Ill Man To Death Charged With Manslaughter

Former U.S. Marine Daniel Penny grabbed a homeless man from behind and choked him to death.
Daniel Penny (center)

Daniel Penny, a former U.S. Marine who killed a homeless man on a New York City subway by putting him in a chokehold was charged today with manslaughter in the second degree.

A video clip of the May 1 incident showed Penny putting Jordan Neely, 30, in a chokehold. A medical examiner called Neely’s death a homicide noting that he died from a compression of the neck.

From Reuters:

According to witnesses, Neely, who was known to impersonate Michael Jackson in the subway system, was complaining loudly about being hungry and saying he was ready to die when Penny came up behind him, gripped him around the neck and restrained him on the floor of the subway car.

Neely then appeared to stop moving, and was later declared dead.

Penny, 24, was arraigned on one count of second-degree manslaughter in Manhattan Criminal Court, where Judge Kevin McGrath released him on $100,000 bond and ordered him to surrender his passport. 

Witnesses say Neely didn’t have any interaction with Penny prior to the former Marine grabbing him from behind.

Penny faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

Supporters of Penny have already launched a crowd funding campaign on GiveSendGo, which has a history of hosting fundraisers for far-right extremists like the January 6 Capitol rioters and Proud Boys.

Penny is being hailed as a “stand your ground” hero by folks on the far-right even though witnesses say that the mental ill homeless man he choked to death had not interacted with him.