Daniel Penny, the 24-year-old responsible for placing Jordan Neely in the chokehold that killed him on the F train in New York City, earlier this month, has spoken out for the first time since the incident. Penny spoke with the New York Post for an interview published on Saturday. He faces criminal charges that could sentence him to up to 15 years in prison.
“This had nothing to do with race,” Penny told the outlet. “I judge a person based on their character. I’m not a white supremacist. I mean, it’s, it’s a little bit comical. Everybody who’s ever met me can tell you, I love all people, I love all cultures. You can tell by my past and all my travels and adventures around the world. I was actually planning a road trip through Africa before this happened.”
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Daniel Penny Turning Himself In
“I was going to my gym,” Penny further explained of what he was doing on the train. “There’s a pool there, I like to swim. I was living in the East Village, I take the subway multiple times a day. I think the New York transit system is the best in the world and I’ve been all over the world.” Later in the interview, he said of Neely’s death: “I’m deeply saddened by the loss of life, it’s tragic what happened to him. Hopefully, we can change the system that’s so desperately failed us.”
Penny was charged with second-degree manslaughter and is free on $100,000 bail. Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg has six months to secure a grand jury indictment against Penny. Neely’s family has called for Penny to be tried for murder. Penny’s attorneys have argued that he was not trying to murder Neely and instead subdue him. They also claim that Neely was posing an active threat to those on the train.