Ron DeSantis Throws His Support Behind Daniel Penny in the Jordan Neely Incident

AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has weighed in on behalf of Daniel Penny, the former Marine presently facing a second-degree manslaughter charge after physically restraining Jordan Neely on a New York City subway train on May 1. Neely, a homeless man with a lengthy list of criminal charges, was behaving threateningly toward other passengers when Penny put him in a submission hold, followed by placing Neely in a recovery position. Neely passed away shortly thereafter.


DeSantis’ May 12 statement came via Twitter:

We must defeat the Soros-Funded DAs, stop the Left’s pro-criminal agenda, and take back the streets for law abiding citizens. We stand with Good Samaritans like Daniel Penny. Let’s show this Marine… America’s got his back.

The tweet included a link to Penny’s defense fund, which thus far has received over $790K in donations.

The criminal charges against Penny were filed on May 11 by Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg. Bragg, in addition to facing tremendous legal heat due to his prosecution of Donald Trump, also has a history of prosecuting crime victims rather than perpetrators. In 2022, Bragg charged bodega worker Jose Alba with murder in the case of his defending himself against an assailant urged on by the assailant’s girlfriend. Bragg eventually freed Alba. Bragg has chosen to file the charges against Penny directly and not go through a grand jury to determine what, if any, indictments warranted filing.

DeSantis’ reference to “Soros-Funded” is based on Bragg receiving a $500,000 campaign donation from Soros, the money being run through the Color of Change PAC. This is not the first time DeSantis has spoken out against Bragg. On March 30 he addressed Bragg’s prosecution of Trump:

The weaponization of the legal system to advance a political agenda turns the rule of law on its head.

It is un-American.

The Soros-backed Manhattan District Attorney has consistently bent the law to downgrade felonies and to excuse criminal misconduct. Yet, now he is stretching the law to target a political opponent.

Florida will not assist in an extradition request given the questionable circumstances at issue with this Soros-backed Manhattan prosecutor and his political agenda.


DeSantis’ public support of Penny is another clear marker he is prepping a run for higher office, i.e., the Presidency, in either 2024 or 2028, most likely 2024. Without getting into the relative merits of DeSantis and Trump, assuming DeSantis does run, such public statements will play well with the conservative voter base. The question is how it will go over with the general public. The mainstream media, which thirsts for another George Floyd around whom to draw viewers while dividing the country, has already started whitewashing (no pun intended) Neely, portraying him as a harmless street performer with a tragic past.

Before Jordan Neely was killed on a New York City subway car this week, he was known for his swift Michael Jackson dance moves that entertained many — yet he struggled with the trauma his mother’s murder had left him with at an early age.

“He told me about how much his mother’s passing impacted him. He disclosed that she was murdered, and her body was put in a suitcase,” Moses Harper, an artist who knew Neely, told CNN.

The facts indicate otherwise.

A New York City police spokesperson told Newsweek that Neely’s record has 42 prior arrests, dating between 2013 and 2021. They include four for alleged assault, while others involved accusations of transit fraud and criminal trespass. At the time of his death, Neely had one active warrant for an alleged assault in connection with a 2021 incident.


DeSantis’ challenge in championing Penny will be getting the message directly to voters that this incident was not racism on display but rather a Good Samaritan protecting himself and fellow subway passengers from a threatening situation. He will have to fight the media every step of the way for this. That said, if we have learned anything about Ron DeSantis over the past few years, it is that when it comes to caring what the media says, zero given.


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