On Friday morning, former Marine Daniel Penny turned himself in to authorities, 11 days after putting a homeless man in a death chokehold on the F train. Penny, 24, was taken into custody for second-degree manslaughter when he arrived at the 5th Precinct in Lower Manhattan around 8 a.m. He showed up in a black SUV, dressed in a black suit and black sneakers, remaining silent and ignoring questions.
Penny’s surrender came less than 24 hours after it was announced that he would face prosecution. His attorney, Thomas Kenniff, stated outside the precinct that his client turned himself in “voluntarily” and “with dignity.” The New York County District Attorney’s office had requested Penny’s presence at the 5th Precinct, and he complied. Kenniff, founding partner of Raiser & Kenniff, commented to reporters, “He did so voluntarily and with the sort of dignity and integrity that is characteristic of his history of service to this grateful nation.” Penny’s arraignment is expected to take place on Friday afternoon.
The killing of Neely, a 30-year-old with a history of mental health issues, on May 1 has left the community on edge, and the manslaughter charge, which carries a potential sentence of up to 15 years in jail, comes at a sensitive time. The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office faced significant pressure to bring charges against Penny as the investigation into the tragic incident unfolded. It was widely anticipated that District Attorney Alvin Bragg would refer the case to a grand jury for charging decisions.
Several days after Neely’s death, the medical examiner determined that his demise resulted from intentional neck compression. On Thursday, sources revealed that the initial complaint report had been updated with the medical examiner’s findings and new witness testimonies. After being interviewed by the police following the fatal chokehold incident, Penny was initially released. His attorneys expressed confidence on Thursday that, once all the facts were revealed, their client would be vindicated of any wrongdoing. They argue that Penny acted in self-defense to protect himself and the other passengers’ lives.
Christopher Neely, the uncle of the deceased, expressed his desire for Penny to face murder charges when speaking to The Post on Thursday.