Republican Party presidential hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy has donated $10,000 to a crowdfunding effort for Daniel Penny, charged with second-degree manslaughter in the death of a homeless schizophrenic.
THE GiveSendGo The fundraising campaign – which has now soared to $2million in donations – was set up by the 24-year-old ex-Navy’s lawyers after a video emerged of him holding Jordan Neely in a strangulation in a New York subway on May 1.
They say it will be used to pay for the Long Island native’s legal fees and for “any future civil lawsuits that may arise, as well as expenses related to his defense.”
On May 5, Rawaswamy tweeted his views on the case, saying Jordan Neely was a “repeat offender” who should have “faced justice” sooner.
He then listed a series of crimes for which Neely had been arrested over the past eight years.
Republican Party presidential hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy has donated $10,000 to a crowdfunding effort for Daniel Penny who has been charged with second-degree manslaughter in the death of a homeless schizophrenic
Daniel Penny, 24, has been charged with the second degree manslaughter of Jordan Neely, 30
This image, provided by Mills & Edwards, LLP, in New York on Friday, May 12, 2023, shows Jordan Neely
He wrote: “The moral of Jordan Neely’s story is uncomplicated: He was a habitual offender who should have been behind bars or in a mental institution, not free to terrorize New Yorkers. If the local police had been allowed to do their job, this man would still be alive today – in police custody.
“In 2015, Jordan Neely kidnapped a 7-year-old girl. In 2019, Jordan Neely punched a 64-year-old man in the face. In 2021, Jordan Neely punched a 67-year-old woman in the face as she exited the subway , breaking his nose and fracturing his orbital bone. Neely has been arrested 44 times, but has never faced real justice for terrorizing New Yorkers. The @ManhattanDA shares responsibility for his death for having created an anti-law enforcement culture Habitual criminals like Neely should not roam free to terrorize and prey on innocent members of our communities.
On Friday, Penny was released pending trial hours after going to a police station and appearing in court to face criminal charges. He did not enter a plea.
The campaign page hit the £1million mark on Sunday after Florida Governor Ron DeSantis shared a Twitter link to the page – showing support for the former soldier is growing rapidly.
Many of those who donated large sums to Penny’s cause are anonymous, including another who also pledged $10,000.
They left a comment that read, “Thank you for protecting the citizens that day.”
The third largest donor, who pledged $5,000, is also anonymous.
This person wrote: “Do the right thing. Dan did. It’s not that difficult.
After her arrest, Bail’s slave Ira Judelson told DailyMail.com that Penny was “very calm and nervous” and was “respectful”.
While Penny was later charged, the other two men seen in the video holding Neely to the ground were never named or charged with wrongdoing.
Now, Penny’s family says, the Navy vet is “shut down” by the legal system.
“It’s disgusting,” Justine Baldwin, Penny’s cousin, told the New York Post. “Here is a young man who has served our country.
‘What about the other two gentlemen on the subway who were helping him (retain Neely)? They weren’t even named.
While images of Penny holding Neely back sparked controversy, those close to her described him as “quiet” and a “fun kid”.
Some have attempted to portray the veteran as a privileged individual following the incident, but those who knew him revealed he grew up in a middle-class military family on Long Island.
“He was always there for his family and his sisters,” Baldwin added. “Danny has always been calm, he comes from a calm family.”
Neighbors reportedly added that he even lived in a van at one point, when he previously shared a three-bedroom house with his three sisters and parents.
“Danny was always fun and goofy and never hurt anyone,” said Navy friend Devin Marino.
“He’s always been super inclusive,” he added. “His family was really nice and had an open door policy.”
Neighbors who knew Penny and her family in West Islip also praised the veteran, with Marcia Mulcahy, who lived opposite him for four years, describing him as “a lovely kid”.
“The family couldn’t have been nicer,” she added. “You just have to watch the fundraiser to see what people think of him.
“We all contribute to it. He was just trying to help on the subway. It was obviously a scary situation and it all went wrong. But he didn’t go there to try to hurt anyone. He was trying to help.
Penny’s attorney, Thomas Kenniff, revealed the veteran had deployed twice in four years of service in the Marines, where he rose to the rank of sergeant before being honorably discharged in 2021.