The family of slain Black man Jordan Neely calls his accused killer’s first public statement an “admission of guilt,” according to a lengthy response issued on Monday morning.
Daniel Penny, 24, the ex-marine who killed Neely after placing him in a lethal chokehold last week, released his own statement via his lawyers on Friday. He shared his condolences to Jordan’s family but ultimately defended his actions and blamed Neely’s mental health issues.
Outraged Members Of Neely’s Family Call Penny’s Statement “An Admission Of Guilt”
However, Neely’s family called Penny’s press release “not an apology nor an expression of regret.” Instead, they slammed Penny for what they called character assassination.
They noted how Penny spoke of how “good” he is in one paragraph and how “bad” Neely was in the next, all to “convince us Jordan’s life was worthless.”
“Daniel Penny’s press release is not an apology nor an expression of regret. It is a character assassination and a clear example of why he believed he was entitled to take Jordan’s life. In the first paragraph, he talks about how “good” he is and the next paragraph he talks about how “bad” Jordan was in an effort to convince us Jordan’s life was ‘worthless.'”
Authorities identified Penny as the man choking Jordan Neely on video after an altercation on a northbound F train last Monday (May 1), as previously reported by The Shade Room.
NYPD reportedly questioned Penny immediately after the incident but released him without any charges, per the New York Post. No charges have been filed as of Monday.
Penny Showed “Indifference” In Killing Jordan, As Well As In His First Public Statement, Family Says
The family said that Penny had no clue about Neely’s mental health problems at the time of the incident. They also accused him of showing “indifference” at the time of Jordan’s death and following his first public message.
“The truth is, he knew nothing about Jordan’s history when he intentionally wrapped his arms around Jordan’s neck, and squeezed and kept squeezing. In the last paragraph, Daniel Penny suggests that the general public has shown “indifference” for people like Jordan, but that term is more appropriately used to describe himself.”
Meet Daniel Penny from West Islip, NY pic.twitter.com/ukkb2gW9Ao
— barbarism critic 🛸 #StopCopCity (@SxarletRed) May 5, 2023
Lawyers For Neely’s Family Call On NYC Mayor Eric Adams To Put Penny “In Prison”
The family’s attorneys concluded with a call on NYC Mayor Eric Adams to put Penny “in prison” and let the family “know Jordan matters.”
“He never attempted to help him at all. In short, his actions on the train, and now his words, show why he needs to be in prison,” the family’s lawyers responded. “Mayor Eric Adams, give us a call. The family wants you to know Jordan matters. You seem to think others are more important than him.”
It continued: “It is clear he is the one who acted with indifference, both at the time he killed Jordan and now in his first public message.”
An innocent Black man with a history of mental illness named #JordanNeely was brutally choked & murdered by a suspected white supremacist, who the police refused to charge, and the white media is protecting.
This culture of anti-Black racism where suspected white supremacists… pic.twitter.com/RKTcF0qbNS
— Tariq Nasheed 🇺🇸 (@tariqnasheed) May 3, 2023
Daniel Penny Releases First Public Statement On Subway Chokehold Death
In his statement, the former marine offered condolences while calling Neely’s death a “tragic accident.” He quickly blamed the situation on Neely, citing his reported history of mental health issues.
“We would first like to express, on behalf of Daniel Penny, our condolences to those close to Mr. Neely. Mr. Neely had a documented history of violent and erratic behavior, the apparent result of ongoing and untreated mental illness. 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.
Penny’s statement ended with a plea for “elected officials to (use the tragedy to) address the mental health crisis on our streets and subways.”
“For too long, those suffering from mental illness have been treated with indifference. 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.”
Jordan Neely was 30. He deserved to grow old. pic.twitter.com/qtSVy7Bmec
— Nina Turner (@ninaturner) May 4, 2023
Grand Jury Set To Decide This Week If Penny Will Be Criminally Charged, Protests Abound In NYC
Neely had been previously arrested 44 times for assaults, attempted child abduction, drugs, and indecent exposure, ABC 7 reports. Officials said he also had at least 43 cases of an “aided case, ” where mental healthcare workers took him in for treatment.
On May 4, Black Lives Matter activists and their supporters protested the death of Neely. Hundreds reportedly showed up in solidarity.
A grand jury is expected to decide this week if Penny will be criminally charged for choking Neely to death, according to ABC 7.