Prominent civil rights attorney, Leo Terrell, has criticized Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg for what he believes is a misuse of race in charging the Marine involved in the death of a reportedly violent, mentally-ill homeless man.
Marine Corps veteran, Daniel Penny, 24, faces charges of second-degree manslaughter concerning the fatal chokehold of 30-year-old Jordan Neely. The incident could see Penny serving up to 15 years behind bars if found guilty.
Earlier this month, Penny was filmed restraining Neely, who was allegedly threatening other passengers. While the hold, unfortunately, led to Neely’s demise, classified as a homicide, the event has sparked contrasting reactions. On one hand, left-wing protestors equate Neely’s death to George Floyd’s, while on the other, a GiveSendGo fundraiser for Penny’s legal fees has collected over $960,000, signifying a considerable degree of support.
Weighing in on the situation, Terrell blasted Bragg, labeling him a ‘far-left’ DA and accusing him of serving up Penny as a ‘sacrificial lamb.’ During an appearance on Fox News’s “The Story with Martha MacCallum,” Terrell questioned why only Penny was charged when others also assisted him in restraining Neely.
Terrell decried Bragg’s alleged use of race in the situation, stating, “You can’t ignore the fact that this Marine is white. You can’t ignore the fact that the victim is black.” In his view, this is a clear example of “the race card” being utilized in an unjust manner.
Terrell also highlighted the discrepancy in the attention given to 27 other individuals who have died in the subway, which he attributes to racial motivations. He stated, “This is the ugliest of the race card being played. And this Marine is the sacrificial lamb. And I find it offensive.”
The civil rights attorney also addressed Lennon Edwards, the lawyer for Neely’s family, who questioned why Neely was assaulted for 15 minutes without any intervention. “The MTA needs to answer for that,” Edwards said.
Responding to Edwards’ remarks, Terrell highlighted a troubling pattern: “Chicago, [Los Angeles], New York – there’s a common thread. A black mayor running these cities. And yet there’s a problem with getting these types of mental services to these individuals? No, they’re being ignored … The minority community is being ignored by people who are running the city.”
This case illustrates a contentious debate surrounding law enforcement, mental health services, and racial issues in our country. It’s a conversation that will continue to evolve as we strive for justice and equality in our society.