Surveillance video from a camera outside the restaurant where a 16-year-old girl stabbed and killed a man on Christmas Eve refutes her claim of self-defense, the Queens DA says. Cyan Brown pleaded not guilty to a charge of first-degree manslaughter yesterday, and her lawyer maintains that the victim, 29-year-old Thomas Winston, threatened Brown, dumped beer on her and seemed as if he was going to hit her with the beer bottle outside a chicken restaurant near the 21st Street-Queensbridge F station in Long Island City.

Initial reports suggested that Brown stabbed Winston after he and his friends harassed her, and chased her through the subway. But prosecutor Naomi Schneidmill says that video shows Brown stabbing Winston in the chest after he stumbled on a snowbank and fell to the ground. It was only then that Winston’s friends went after Ms. Brown, chasing her to the subway station, where she escaped. In a statement, Queens DA Richard Brown said:

Based upon our review of the evidence, Ms. Brown has been charged with first-degree manslaughter - that is to say that it is alleged that she intended to cause serious physical injury to her victim and, in the process, she caused his death. We do not believe that the evidence supports a defense of justification under the law. In order to have been justified - that is to say that she acted in self defense - it would have to be shown that she reasonably believed that deadly force was being used - or was about to be used - against her. And even then the law imposes upon her a duty to retreat.

Following a verbal altercation... it is alleged that Ms. Brown exited the restaurant with the knife she had been carrying and that the victim, seeing the knife, backed up but slipped on the snow and fell. At that point, it is alleged that Ms. Brown jumped on him and stabbed him once before fleeing into the subway.

Judge Lenora Gerald set bail at $300,000, despite Brown's lawyer's request that it be set at $2,500. The Times solemnly reports that during the arraignment "Ms. Brown, who lives in the Queensbridge Houses, not far from where the stabbing took place, stared at the ground as both sides debated the case, her hands cuffed behind her back. Her mother was in court with a dozen other relatives, but left without saying a word. She had on sunglasses and wiped her tears with a scarf wrapped around her neck."