Jordan Neely’s death ruled homicide after video shows man putting him in rear naked choke on NYC subway

Jordan Neely was killed on the NYC subway after another passenger put him in a rear naked choke.

By: Tim Bissell | 5 months ago
Jordan Neely’s death ruled homicide after video shows man putting him in rear naked choke on NYC subway
Jordan Neely was choked to death on the NYC subway by another passenger. Credit: New York Post/YouTube

Jordan Neely killed while riding NYC subway

The New York City medical examiner has ruled Jordan Neely’s death a homicide after video showed him apparently being choked by another passenger on a subway train (per Washington Post).

Neely, a 30-year-old houseless Black man, was riding the northbound F train in Manhattan on Monday. After pleading for food and throwing his coat on the floor, Neely was allegedly attacked by a 24-year-old White passenger, who then put him in a chokehold reminiscent of the rear naked chokes often seen in MMA and BJJ bouts.

The 24-year-old held Neely in that position for around three minutes, as evidenced in video taken by freelance journalist Juan Alberto Vazquez. That video, which Bloody Elbow will not disseminate, was posted on Facebook and republished with numerous other outlets. Vazquez, who said Neely and the other man were in that position for around 15 minutes, captured Neely’s arms and legs flailing as blood was being cut off to his brain and then going limp as he died.

New York Police have said that witnesses claimed Neely was acting “hostile and erratic” before he was killed. Vazquez told WaPo that Neely didn’t attack anyone before being put in the fatal chokehold.

“I don’t have food, I don’t have a drink, I’m fed up. I don’t mind going to jail and getting life in prison. I’m ready to die,” said Neely prior to the incident, according to Vazquez.

Outrage over the death of Jordan Neely

Before his death Neely was known to impersonate Michael Jackson on New York’s subway lines. The 24-year-old accused of killing him is a Marine Corps veteran.

At this time of writing police have not arrested the 24-year-old.

The death of Jordan Neely has been met with protests calling for justice. Yesterday demonstrators took to the subway system to call for an arrest in this case.

Video about the incident from CBS news (which only contains a still captured during the incident)

Chokeholds have lead to numerous high profile deaths

Jordan Neely’s death comes almost eight years after Eric Garner, a 43-year-old Black man, was choked to death by a White police officer on a New York City street. That killing was also captured on video by a bystander.

Garner’s death came after he was accosted by police on suspicion of selling single cigarettes from packs.

Garner was taken to the ground by NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo, who then wrapped his neck up in a move similar to a rear naked choke. Garner’s last words were “I can’t breathe”, which he said 11 times before dying.

Garner’s death was ruled a homicide. A grand jury in Richmond County declined to to indict Pantaleo over the killing. The U.S. Justice Department declined to indict Pantaleo over the incident, too.

In 2019, five years after the killing, the City of New York agreed to pay Garner’s family $5.9 million in an out-of-court-settlement.

Later that year, Pantaleo was fired from the NYPD.

In 2020 George Floyd was killed by Derek Chauvin, a White police officer. Floyd died after Chauvin kneeled on his neck for over nine minutes. Floyd’s death sparked international demonstrations regarding the treatment of Black people in the U.S. by police.

In 2021 Chauvin was convicted of murder and sentenced to over 22 years in prison.

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About the author
Tim Bissell
Tim Bissell

Tim Bissell is a writer, editor and deputy site manager for Bloody Elbow. He has covered combat sports since 2015. Tim covers news and events and has also written longform and investigative pieces. Among Tim's specialties are the intersections between crime and combat sports. Tim has also covered head trauma, concussions and CTE in great detail.

Tim is also BE's lead (only) sumo reporter. He blogs about that sport here and on his own substack, Sumo Stomp!

Email me at Nice messages will get a response.

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