New York Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (AOC) and New York City Mayor Eric Adams locked horns on Thursday over the death of a homeless man on the subway.
On Wednesday night, Ocasio-Cortez tweeted her horror and indignation at “the murder” of Jordan Neely, a man detained by his fellow subway commuters after a mental breakdown and began yelling at and threatening other riders.
The online uproar had been triggered by a video showing 30-year-old Jordan Neely being choked by a U.S. Marine veteran who responded to the man’s yelling at other passengers by tackling him to the train floor.
The city’s medical examiner has ruled his death a homicide and the cause as a chokehold, but the office has stated that it will leave any finding of guilt to the courts.
A spokesman stated that investigators would review the medical examiner’s report and that the matter was being handled by “senior, experienced prosecutors.”
However, some progressives have criticized how local officials have responded. Democratic Mayor Eric Adams stated on Wednesday that he would refrain from commenting more on the subject due to the lack of information available.
The 24-year-old Marine veteran reportedly choked Neely for around 15 minutes. Two more passengers pinned Neeley’s shoulders and arms to the ground.
Adams said AOC was hasty in concluding that Neely had been “murdered.”
Adams said he doesn’t think it’s very responsible for making inciting comments when police are still looking into the matter when asked about both tweets on “CNN Primetime” late Wednesday night.
Having trouble publicly denouncing a murder because the victim belonged to a social class some people consider “too low” to care about is “honestly a new low,” AOC said.
Ocasio-Cortez noted in a subsequent tweet that she had “yet to hear a real explanation from any official hesitating to condemn the killing of Jordan Neely” about what makes criticizing this violence so “complicated.”
She said that it’s wrong to take the lives of the impoverished. It’s unfair to kill people who are mentally sick.
“Why is it so difficult to say?” AOC inquired.
In her criticism of the mayor, Ocasio-Cortez called the incident a “public murder.”