Ex-Marine Faces Manslaughter Charge In Chokehold Death Of Jordan Neely

Photo: Getty Images

Daniel Penny has surrendered to New York City police as he faces charges in the chokehold death of Michael Jackson impersonator Jordan Neely.

According to ABC News, Penny turned himself in on Friday (May 12), one day after the Manhattan District Attorney's Office announced that he would be arrested and charged with second-degree murder following Neely's death.

Neely, a 30-year-old homeless man with a history of mental health issues, was aboard an NYC subway on May 1 when he was choked to death. Some passengers said they feared for their life as Neely boarded the train and began having outbursts. Video shows Penny, a former U.S. Marine, holding Neely in a chokehold for roughly three minutes as another rider held his body down. In total, one passenger said the chokehold lasted 15 minutes.

Penny was initially questioned by detectives and released, police said. But after reviewing videos of the incident, interviewing more witnesses, and considering the medical examiner's determination, the Manhattan DA's office pursued charges.

In a statement on Thursday (May 11), Penny's attorneys said they are confident that "once all the facts and circumstances surrounding this tragic incident are brought to bear, Mr. Penny will be fully absolved of any wrongdoing."

"When Mr. Penny, a decorated Marine veteran, stepped in to protect himself and his fellow New Yorkers, his well-being was not assured. He risked his own life and safety, for the good of his fellow passengers," the statement reads. "The unfortunate result was the unintended and unforeseen death of Mr. Neely."

However, police sources told ABC News that Neely wasn't violent or threatening anyone in particular when he was choked to death by a passenger.

A grand jury is set to hear evidence in the case in the coming weeks. Penny could face a maximum of 15 years in prison for the second-degree manslaughter charge.

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