Photo depicting a protestor holding up a sign that reads "Justice for Jordan Neely."

NEWS GLEAMS | NYC Medical Examiner Rules Death of Jordan Neely as a Homicide

A roundup of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle!

curated by Vee Hua 華婷婷

✨Gleaming This Week✨

Photo depicting a protestor holding up a sign that reads "Justice for Jordan Neely."
Protesters gather for a “Justice for Jordan Neely” rally calling for the man who used the chokehold on Neely to be apprehended in Washington Square Park on May 5, 2023, in New York City. Photo via Ron Adar/

New York City Medical Examiner Rules Death of Jordan Neely as a Homicide

In what was ruled a homicide by New York City’s medical examiner, a houseless New York subway rider, 30-year-old Jordan Neely, was placed in a chokehold by another passenger which caused him to lose consciousness last Monday, May 1. He ultimately died once he was transferred to a nearby hospital, and the cause of death was a “compression of the neck,” also known as a chokehold.

CNN reports that Neely made a living as a “well-known Michael Jackson impersonator in Times Square and on New York’s subways” following the murder of his mother in 2007 — though he had recently found himself in challenging times. Prior to being placed in a chokehold, Neely was inside a crowded subway car, yelling at other passengers that he was “hungry and thirsty and tired of having nothing,” though his actions never turned violent. A 24-year-old man came up behind Neely and placed him in a chokehold, after which the two fell to the ground. Partway into the incident, one passenger began used his cellphone to record what is now widely publicized video. The video reveals reveals that one passenger may have been trying to intervene at one point, while another seems to have been helping to restrain Neely by holding onto his arm. Neely was put in a chokehold until he went limp. 

The man who killed Neely has been identified as Daniel J. Penny, though numerous days had passed before the authorities were able to identify him. Penny, a former Marine who grew up in Long Island, released a statement on May 5 with his lawyers, which the Gothamist reports stated, “When Mr. Neely began aggressively threatening Daniel Penny and the other passengers, Daniel, with the help of others, acted to protect themselves, until help arrived … Daniel never intended to harm Mr. Neely & could not have foreseen his untimely death.”

Though the death was ruled a homicide, such a ruling does not determine the legal outcome of the case. The Manhattan district attorney Alvin Bragg is investigating the incident; no charges have yet been filed. It would be up to Bragg to determine whether the case should go before a grand jury, who will determine whether criminal charges should be filed.

Neely is Black and Penny is white. The homicide has sparked protests and arrests around New York City while renewing conversations about mental health.

North Lot groundbreaking, 2023. (Photo: Ronnie Estoque)

Housing Development Consortium Announces Eighth Annual Affordable Housing Week

In a week of events intended to “educate, mobilize, and ignite a movement for affordable housing,” the Housing Development Consortium (HDC) is hosting the eighth annual King County Affordable Housing Week from May 7 to 13. The week has been recognized by King County and 25 additional cities in Seattle, who understand that housing equity is important.

According to their press release, the events will focus on engagement with elected officials, City and County staff, housing advocates, and King County residents, to bring people together for affordable housing and transformative investments.

Events are in-person and online. See a full list on the Housing Development Consortium website. They take place throughout King County, but upcoming events in the South End include:

In-Person Events

Panelists Jamie Lee of SCIDpda, Joel Ing of Edge Developers, Stephanie Ferrerll of Weber Thompson, and Miguel Maestas of El Centro de la Raza will discuss the North Lot project — an affordable housing project developed by SCIDpda and currently under construction — including the keys to the project’s successful community engagement, design, and financing.

Virtual Events

HDC Resident Services Affinity Group hosts this panel discussion to chat about resident services and support work, including “emerging trends, challenges, and work needed to promote resiliency and well-being among residents within nonprofit affordable housing.”

Photo depicting Taffy Maene Johnson in bright blue and Seiuli Tiare Chanel in traditional Pacific Islander garments cutting the ribbon in front of the clinic.
UTOPIA Washington Executive Director Taffy Maene Johnson (left) and Board Member Seiuli Tiare Chanel (right) cut the ribbon to mark the grand opening of Mapu Maia Clinic. (Photo courtesy of Mapu Maia Clinic.)

Mapu Maia Clinic Opens to Offer Health Care for QTPI and QTBIPOC Community

The Mapu Maia Clinic in Kent, Washington, officially opened its doors on Wednesday, May 3, celebrating their new health clinic, which will offer health care for members of the QTPI (Queer and Transgender Pacific Islanders) and QTBIPOC (Queer and Transgender Black, Indigenous, People of Color) community. According to Mapu Maia Clinic’s press release, they serve as “a place of refuge aimed at providing all of our 2SLGBTQI+ (Two-Spirit, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, +) community with quality health care in a space that honors all facets and intersections of our identities,” using a “community-informed approach” to their health care.

Stay tuned for a more in-depth video and feature article about their work via South Seattle Emerald.

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📸 Featured Image: Protesters gather for a “Justice for Jordan Neely” rally calling for the man who used the chokehold on Neely to be apprehended in Washington Square Park on May 5, 2023, in New York City. Photo via Ron Adar/

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