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NYC Blames Victim for Her Own Murder in Public Housing

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A group of lawyers are saying that the shooting death of a college student who was murdered at an East Harlem housing project was “unavoidable” and that she knew the “risks” and “dangers” involved.

In 2013, Olivia Brown was fatally shot by Michele “Mohawk” Graham after an argument broke out at the Lincoln Houses Development, according to Gawker.

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Crystal Brown, Olivia’s mother, then sued the city claiming that her daughter’s murder was due to a lack of security at the complex.

Lawyers for the New York City Housing Authority disagree and say Olivia’s death was “spontaneous” and they are refusing to give her family a settlement.

“All the risks, hazards and dangers were open, obvious and apparent to [Brown] and said risks, hazards and dangers were openly and voluntarily assumed by [Brown],” the lawyers wrote in a statement.

However, Crystal explained to the New York Post that she believes the lawyers are essentially saying that her daughter was responsible for her own death.

“Everybody has a right to be safe in their home,” Brown said. “Why wasn’t my daughter safe? Because we’re poor and living in public housing?”

Since the murder, several cameras and two police towers have been installed at the complex.

“Why didn’t they have the security in place to protect her when there’s been a history of violence here for 25 years?” asked Brown in an interview with Complex. 

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