New York High Schooler Charged With Stabbing Death Of Dancer O'Shae Sibley

The high school student hurled homophobic and anti-Black slurs at him, the police say.

New York City police arrested a 17-year-old high school student Friday (Aug 4) and charged him with murder in the fatal stabbing of professional dancer O’Shae Sibley, 28, who was gay, in an attack that authorities allege was motivated by hate, the Associated Press reports.

The stabbing happened on July 29 when two groups confronted each other at a Brooklyn gas station where Sibley was dancing with his friends to a Beyoncé song.

“Parents lost a child, a child, to something that was clearly a hate crime,” Mayor Eric Adams, said Saturday (Aug. 5) at a news conference outside the gas station where Sibley was killed.

The New York Daily News reports that the accused teen was charged as an adult with second-degree murder and committing a hate crime. Authorities have declined to identify him because he is a juvenile. Assistant Police Chief Joe Kenny said the teen used homophobic and anti-Black slurs at Sibley before later plunging a knife into the victim’s side, piercing his heart.

Sibley and his friends were vogue dancing shirtless and in swim trunks near the gas pumps at the Midwood neighborhood station. Kenny said the teens “demanded that they stop dancing.”

According to the AP, surveillance video shows that the two groups walked away. But Sibley and a friend returned and again confronted one of the young men who was still at the station recording on his phone. The surveillance footage shows Sibley following the teen before lunging at him. They disappeared from view before Sibley can be seen walking backward into the camera’s field of view. He checked his side and then collapsed on the sidewalk.

A witness told The Daily News that the group of teens identified themselves as Muslim and objected to the dance performance. But the accused teen’s grandmother told the newspaper that her grandson is not Muslim and not racist.

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“The news says he hates Black people, but his older brother has married a Black woman. We have a grandchild who is Black. He does not understand gay or not gay,” she said, adding that her grandson was defending himself from four intoxicated men.

Sibley was a member of the Philadanco dance company where he took classes with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s Ailey Extension program, according to the AP.The Daily News said Sibley has performed at Lincoln Center in Manhattan and was a competitive voguer.

On Saturday (Aug. 5), Sibley’s family, friends and supporters rallied and marched in his honor, carrying orange balloons and white candles chanting “O’Shae Sibley.” Some of them vogued at Pier 46 on the Hudson River, performing Sibley’s famous dance moves.

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