A Brooklyn man who got into a knife fight with a loan shark which inadvertently led to a 13-year-old girl's death is claiming that he had been acting in self-defense. Kenneth Risher is charged with fatally stabbing loan shark Shawn Lewis; Lewis had attempted to flee the scene in his SUV, but ended up running down 13-year-old Kira Goddard. And the whole tragedy was over $40.

Lewis had allegedly been trying to muscle a $40 debt out of Risher, which he claimed he had already paid, on July 30. Risher told authorities that Lewis attacked him with a knife anyway, slicing his arm. Because it was "a self defense situation," Risher whipped out his own knife and stabbed Lewis in the chest. A wounded Lewis got into his Range Rover and drove two blocks before smashing into three parked cars, and then flipping over onto the sidewalk in Brownsville, pinning Goddard, who had been standing against the stoop of the building where she lived, underneath it.

Police said that Goddard had warned her friends and rushed other kids to safety as the car came at them, but couldn't get herself out of the car's way. Risher turned himself in to police yesterday, and has been charged with murder and criminal possession of a weapon.