Jordan Neely’s family to file wrongful death lawsuit against Daniel Penny
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The family of Jordan Neely, the homeless man placed in a fatal chokehold on the subway, are planning to file a wrongful death lawsuit against former US marine Daniel Penny.
Neely died on May 1 after he was forcefully restrained by Penny after he began shouting at passengers, telling them that he was hungry and thirsty and had little to live for.
The whole incident was caught on video and has caused a media firestorm.
Penny, who shared in an interview that his actions against Neely 'had nothing to do with race', and that the system had sadly failed Neely, faces a manslaughter charge.
Carolyn Neely, Jordan Neely's aunt who is representing Jordan's estate, has hired Manhattan law firm Mills & Edwards to file civil action against Penny.
The missive sent to Penny's attorney reads: “Please be advised that this office has been retained to pursue a claim for personal injuries and wrongful death. Your action resulted in the death of Jordan Neely,”
The letter also asks for Penny's insurance information. His attorneys, Steven Raiser and Thomas Kenniff have so far declined to give public comment.
Penny, 24, is out on a $100,000 bail. His defense fund, a GiveSendGo campaign created by his attorneys, is currently above $2.8 million, with donors taking to the page to send money and show their support for Penny.
The page on the crowdfunding platform states that anything left over after Penny's legal bills are paid will be donated to a New York City mental health program.
The viral footage of the chokehold shows Penny wrapping his arms around Neely's neck in an attempt to restrain him while two other subway users assist him.
Witnesses who have come forward since the incident have claimed that Neely was acting erratically and in a threatening behaviour towards other passengers before Penny decided to step in.
Jordan Neely, 30, had a long history of mental illness and had been arrested several times prior.
Penny told The New York Post last week: “I’m deeply saddened by the loss of life.
“It’s tragic what happened to him [Neely]. Hopefully, we can change the system that’s so desperately failed us.”
However, Neely's family believe Penny should be tried for murder.