"When it happened there was a threat of harm toher," he said. "She was in danger from her mom."
After pleading no contest to voluntarymanslaughter, Grant served time in a juvenilecorrections center before being allowed to move inwith her uncle and aunt in Cambridge. After adisagreement with them, however, she moved into anapartment in North Cambridge.
Although several students at Rindge and Latinyesterday refused to comment on Grant, the friendcriticized Harvard's decision to rescind heracceptance.
"This was clearly an event from a long time agothat has no bearing on her academic life," thefriend said.
"What happened is obviously not a good thing,"the friend added. "At the same time there arereasons why [murders] occur. A child does not killa parent for a petty reason."
"She is one of the most extraordinary peopleI've ever met," said John P. Case '66, the fatherof Grant's boyfriend Liam, also a student atRindge and Latin. "She's an extraordinarily strongindividual."
Case said he has been upset by intense mediacoverage. "I believe Gina's entitled to herprivacy, like all of us, " he commented.
Grant's neighbors gave mixed account of herbehavior.
Jeremy Atkins, who lives downstairs from Grantin an 8-unit Chester Street apartment building,said "she was a very rude person."
"She was a personal slob," Atkins said. "Shewas irresponsible with the rent, she would leavetrash all over the place," said the 28-year-oldsoftware designer.
"She was sort of a manipulative kid," Atkinssaid. "She talked about how her parents were deadand how she was an orphan."
Other neighbors gave different descriptions.
"She's a very nice kid," said Margaret M.Howley, a neighbor of Alan and Carol Bennett,Grant's uncle and aunt.
"I thought Harvard would be another step infulfilling her dreams," said Swerling, thecriminal defense attorney. "I've been around a lotof bad people in my life. This girl is good."
Jeffrey N. Gell contributed to the reportingof this article.