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Jordan Neely, a young Black homeless man who reportedly suffered a mental health episode while on a New York City subway train, was subdued by a passenger and eventually lost his life. Neely’s death was ruled a homicide as protestors continue to demand justice.
Neely, 30, was aboard an F train at the Broadway-Lafayette station when he allegedly threated passengers while standing. Another passenger, reportedly a U.S. Marine, grabbed Neely from behind with a rear-naked chokehold to subdue Neely as others looked on. From the little video footage we could bear to watch, Neely was effectively constrained by the Marine and two others posing no real threat but the Marine kept the deadly chokehold applied tightly and emergency response teams were unable to revive him.
As reported by local outlet ABC 7, protestors planned a protest outside of the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office for Thursday (May 4), adding to the growing cries of injustice and a common refrain that Neely’s death was indeed murder. The Marine, 24, was taken into custody and eventually released. Howwever, with the homicide ruling, charges could be pending for the Long Island resident.
As the news of Neely’s passing grew wide, most remembered him as a Michael Jackson imprsonator who held performances in and around the Times Square area. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was among the many public figures to speak out regarding Neely’s death and opened a tweet about the matter with, “Jordan Neely was murdered.”
The tweet was decried by New York Mayor Eric Adams, who said of Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez’s tweet, “I don’t think that’s very responsible at the time when we’re still investigating the situation.”
While Neely’s death was ruled a homicide, the Manhattan DA will need to file charges if the case is to move ahead.
New York City Comptroller Brad Lander has been especially vocal regarding Neely’s death, also incurring the criticism of Mayor Adams. However, Lander is refusing to back down.
Across social media, many are gathered in support of Jordan Neely and his family in their ongoing fight to find a legal resolution.