'Mr. Penny Cared For People': Subway Witness Calls Marine Corps Veteran Daniel Penny A Hero

A woman of color in her sixties, unnamed for her protection, told reporters this week that U.S. Marine Corps Veteran Daniel Penny, who forcibly restrained thirty-year-old Jordan Neely in a chokehold leading to his death, is a hero.

According to Fox News, Neely, who suffered from mental illness, stepped onto the northbound F Train the afternoon of May 1st and began to scream and threaten his fellow passengers. The woman, a New Yorker for five decades, explained,

"I’m sitting on a train reading my book, and, all of a sudden, I hear someone spewing this rhetoric. He said, ‘I don’t care if I have to kill an F, I will. I’ll go to jail, I’ll take a bullet.’"

"He’s a hero. It was self-defense, and I believe in my heart that he saved a lot of people that day that could have gotten hurt."

As panicked passengers crowded the doors, the woman took stock of her situation, "I’m looking at where we are in the tube, in the sardine can, and I’m like, ‘OK, we’re in between stations. There’s nowhere we can go,’" she told Fox News.

"The people on that train, we were scared. We were scared for our lives."


According to Rebecca Rosenberg writing for Fox News, Penny only stepped in once the Neely began to use the words "kill" and "bullet." He reportedly attempted to reason with the man. "Why in the world would you take a bullet? Why? You don’t take a bullet because you’ve snatched something from somebody’s hand. You take a bullet for violence," the witness said. She added that it was clear to her, that Penny waited until the last possible moment to physically engage Neely to protect the people on the train.

The witness didn't see the initial strike but heard a thump through the crowd as Penny forced Neely to the ground. She couldn't see the two grappling until many of the passengers exited at the next station. She waited with Penny and others to speak with the police.

"Mr. Penny cared for people. That’s what he did. That is his crime," she explained to Rosenberg. She noted that after the struggle, at least three other passengers thanked the Marine Vet who was clearly shaken.

"Nobody wants to kill anybody. Mr. Penny didn’t want to kill that man," she said. "You should have seen the way Mr. Penny looked. He was distraught. He was very, very, very visibly distressed. And he didn’t go. He didn’t run. He stayed." 

"It took three men to hold Mr. Neely down. He was struggling," the witness added, the two other men haven't been identified by police.

After protests throughout the weekend and Democrats exerting massive political pressure, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg (D) charged Penny. Fox News reported that Penny is free on a $100,000 bond and will return to court on July 17th.

As of this writing, Penny's legal fund on GiveSendGo has raised over $2.6 million.

The unnamed witness told Rosenberg she was thrilled Penny is getting help. "I hope that they raise more because it’s going to cost a pretty penny, no pun intended, to get this young man justice," she said.

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