A grand jury is expected to examine the case of Jordan Neely, a New York man who passed away after being put in a chokehold by a subway passenger. The proceedings are scheduled for next week, during which the grand jury will decide whether to press criminal charges against 24-year-old Marine veteran Daniel Penny, who applied the chokehold on May 1 in response to Neely’s reported erratic behavior.
Penny was interrogated and later released by the New York City police. Through a statement from his lawyers on Friday, Penny extended his condolences to Neely’s family and friends, and pointed out that Neely had “a well-documented history of violent and unpredictable behavior, seemingly due to ongoing and unaddressed mental health issues.” The statement also emphasized that Penny did not aim to harm Neely and could not have foreseen his untimely death.
On Wednesday, the New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner ruled Neely’s death a homicide. The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office announced that their extensive investigation would include reviewing the Medical Examiner’s report, evaluating all available video and photographic evidence, conducting interviews with as many witnesses as possible, and securing additional medical records.
Video footage of the incident shows Penny maintaining a chokehold on Neely for an extended period while two other passengers attempt to restrain Neely’s arms.
Eventually, all three let him go, leaving Neely lifeless on the ground. Police sources stated that Neely had been acting erratically on the train, allegedly throwing garbage and shouting at other passengers. It is reported that Penny intervened to pacify Neely, but the situation quickly escalated into a physical altercation. Authorities mentioned that it remains unclear who provoked the conflict, but sources suggest that Penny applied the chokehold on Neely while asking onlookers to contact emergency services.