Daniel Penney, the Navy SEAL who choked homeless man Jordan Neely to death in the subway last week, surrendered Friday to face second-degree manslaughter charges.
Mr. Penny, 24, wearing a dark gray suit, walked through the front door of the police department’s Fifth Precinct around 8 a.m., hands tied behind his back, Mr. Benny was escorted off campus at 10:38 am. He was loaded into a black police car waiting to be taken to Manhattan Criminal Court, where he will be arraigned later Friday.
Mr. Penny met Jordan Neely, 30, on the F train on May 1 and held him in a chokehold for several minutes, killing him. Mr. has a history of mental illness. Witnesses said Neely was acting “hostile and erratic” toward other passengers on the train, according to police. Benny started choking him.
The struggle on the F train was captured on four minutes of video, which shows Mr Penny continuing to choke Mr Neely for another 50 seconds after Mr Neely stopped moving. The police that night Mr. Benny was interviewed, but initially released without charge.
A week and a half later, on Thursday, the Manhattan district attorney’s office confirmed that it planned to charge Mr. Penney with murder.
Mr. Penny’s attorneys, Steven M. Riser and Thomas A. Kenniff said in a statement, “Once all the facts and circumstances surrounding this tragic incident are brought to light, they are confident that Mr. Penny will be fully exonerated of any wrongdoing.”
Mr. In the days after Neely’s murder, many city leaders, politicians and New York advocates spoke out against Mr. Neely, who has struggled with mental illness and homelessness. They called for Benny’s immediate arrest. Mr. They said Neely’s killing highlighted the city’s failure to care for its most vulnerable and marginalized residents.
Some Democratic politicians have criticized Mayor Eric Adams for shutting down the initial response to the murder. A few days later, on Wednesday, the mayor addressed Mr. He said Neely’s “life mattered” and his death was “a tragedy that should never have happened”.
In a statement Thursday, the district attorney’s office said Mr. After announcing that he planned to indict Penny, Mr. Adams said: “I have great confidence in the judicial process and that justice can now be served against Daniel Penny.”
A subway performer known for his Michael Jackson impersonations, Mr. Neely seems to have suffered from severe mental illness in recent years. Vasquez was a freelance journalist who videotaped what happened inside the subway car.
Mr. Mr. Neely said. Vasquez recalled, “‘I don’t mind going to jail and being incarcerated,'” and “‘I’m ready to die'”.
By the time the train stopped at the Broadway-Lafayette station, Mr. Penny, Mr. Neely was lowered to the floor in a chokehold and two men grabbed his arms and legs. Mr. Mr. Benny testified that he did not see Penny grab Mr. Neely, but that he heard a noise and saw both of them on the floor. Vasquez said.
Police said they received a call at 2:27 p.m. about a fight on an F train at the station.
At 2:29 pm another passenger said his wife was in the army and knew about the suffocation, Mr. Neely can be heard in the video warning the men to make sure she doesn’t defecate herself.
“You don’t want to get caught on a murder charge,” he says.
Mr. Neely was taken to Lennox Health Hospital in Greenwich Village, where he was pronounced dead. Two days later, the medical examiner’s office said Mr. Neely’s death was ruled a homicide and the cause of death was strangulation.
Mr. As news of Penny’s impending charges reverberated Thursday, National Urban League President and CEO Mark H. In a statement, Morial said the district attorney’s decision to charge him “reminds us of the measured response to this shocking episode.” It was necessary.”
“Though not always swift, a methodical approach to justice in this case bends toward the fair application of the law,” he said.
Former President Donald J. Joshua Steinglass, a veteran homicide attorney who helped lead the investigation team in the case against Trump’s family business, is leading the investigation, the district attorney’s office said.
Second degree manslaughter, also known as reckless homicide, Mr. Penny, Mr. Prosecutors must prove that he caused Neely’s death and did so recklessly. If convicted, Mr Penny could face up to 15 years in prison.
Mr. Penny’s lawyers, Mr. It will be argued that the force he used against Neely was justified. So, Mr. Neely Mr. He believed he represented Penny, the other passengers, or both.
Mr. Prosecutors must prove that Mr. Penny used deadly force without believing that Neely also used or was about to use deadly force.
Many activists and politicians Mr. They called for Benny to be charged with murder. But that is an unlikely scenario. To win a murder charge, Mr. Penny, Mr. Prosecutors will have to show Neely intended to cause her death or acted with “gross negligence.”
Manhattan District Attorney’s Office Mr. It confirmed that it planned to charge Penny, saying it had determined it had enough evidence to arrange for his surrender. However, Mr., who grew up on Long Island and has no criminal record. The office still needs to get a grand jury indictment to pursue a criminal case against Penny.
Nate Schweber Contributed report.