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New York man to be charged in subway chokehold killing of Jordan Neely

New York police officers respond to the scene where a fight was reported on a subway train, Monday, May 1, 2023, in New York. A man suffering an apparent mental health episode aboard a New York City subway died on Monday after being placed in a headlock by a fellow rider, according to police officials and video of the encounter. Jordan Neely, 30, was shouting and pacing aboard an F train in Manhattan witnesses and police said, when he was taken to the floor by another passenger. (Paul Martinka via AP)
New York police officers investigate a subway train where Jordan Neely died after a fellow passenger, Daniel Perry, restrained him with a chokehold. (Paul Martinka / New York Post)

The Marine veteran who put a man in a chokehold on a New York City subway car last week, killing him, will face charges and is expected to turn himself in to authorities Friday, prosecutors said.

Daniel Penny, 24, will be arrested on suspicion of second-degree manslaughter in the May 1 death of Jordan Neely, a spokesperson for the Manhattan district attorney’s office said in a statement.

The office declined to provide further comment.

“We cannot provide any additional information until he has been arraigned in Manhattan Criminal Court, which we expect to take place tomorrow,” said the statement provided by D.A. spokesman Douglas Cohen.

Neely, 30, died in a homicide as a result of compression of the neck, or a chokehold, the New York City medical examiner’s office determined last week.

Witnesses said Neely, who was Black, was yelling and appeared to be suffering a mental health episode when Penny, who is white, grabbed him from behind and placed him in a chokehold.

The New York City Police Department opened an investigation into the death, which was captured in a video taken by Juan Alberto Vázquez and posted to a Facebook page called “Luces de Nueva York.”

In the video, Penny is seen with his arms wrapped around Neely’s neck as the pair lie on the floor of the F train car. At several points, Neely kicks his legs and tries to free his arms, which a third passenger is pinning down.

After about two minutes, Neely’s body appears to go limp. The other two continue to hold him down for nearly a minute before letting go. Someone can be heard advising them to position Neely on his side in case he chokes.

In a public post on the Facebook page, Vázquez wrote in Spanish that he was on the subway heading to Yonkers when Neely got on.

“I don’t have food, I don’t have anything to drink, I’m fed up,” the man yelled, according to Vázquez, who said the man continued to shout: “I don’t mind going to jail and getting life in prison,” and “I’m ready to die.”

Neely had been homeless at times, according to people who knew him, and had earned money imitating Michael Jackson as a street performer.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.