NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — A Queens barber charged with stabbing a teenager to death with a pair of shears said he feared being attacked, according to court documents.

Cedric Simpson, 34, was arraigned Saturday on a murder charge in the death of Carl Richardson.

Court papers said Simpson told police he stabbed Richardson, 19, “because he was trying to attack” him. Simpson’s lawyer told the New York Daily News Daily News that Richardson lifted his shirt at one point and that Simpson mistakenly thought Richardson was armed.

Police Commissioner Bill Bratton said Richardson had come into the barbershop, at 227-14 Merrick Blvd. in Laurelton, Queens this past Thursday afternoon to collect a debt.

Richardson’s family has said he sold Simpson some headphones the previous day and went back to collect the agreed-upon price. Richardson’s relatives say the barber refused to pay and ultimately attacked the teen.

Richardson was a student at Nassau Community College studying to become an occupational therapist. He was selling the headphones to help pay for a car, police said.

Richardson’s grieving father, a Metropolitan Transportation Authority conductor, told the Daily News the murder of his son over a $40 set of headphones is trivial and senseless.

Simpson, the co-owner of the barber shop, was taken into custody at the scene.

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