NYC Teen Charged With Hate Crime in Stabbing

High school student allegedly killed a gay man who was being taunted for dancing
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 6, 2023 8:15 AM CDT
NYC Teen Charged With Hate Crime in Stabbing
This undated photo shows O'Shae Sibley, center, during a class at the Ailey Extension dance school in New York.   (Photo Courtesy of Whitney Brown and Ailey Extension via AP)

Police have arrested a 17-year-old high school student on a hate-motivated murder charge in the fatal stabbing of a professional dancer during an altercation between two groups of friends at a New York City gas station last weekend. Police took the teenager into custody Friday in connection with the killing of the 28-year-old O'Shae Sibley, who was gay, per the AP. Authorities declined to release the defendant's name. "Parents lost a child, a child, to something that was clearly a hate crime," Mayor Eric Adams said Saturday during a news conference outside the Brooklyn gas station where Sibley was killed July 29.

The stabbing occurred after the two groups got into a confrontation at one of the gas pumps, where Sibley was dancing with his friends to a Beyoncé song. Authorities said Sibley's group was being taunted by the other group before the confrontation ended in violence. Beyoncé would later pay tribute to Sibley on her website. Security camera video showed the two groups arguing for a few minutes. Both sides had walked away when Sibley and a friend abruptly returned and again confronted one of the young men, who had stayed behind recording on his phone.

In the video, Sibley could be seen following the teen and then lunging at him before the two disappeared out of the camera's view. A moment later, he walks backward into view, checking his side, and then collapses to the sidewalk. He was stabbed once in the left rib cage, according to Assistant Police Chief Joe Kenny. "We can see on the video a heated verbal dispute quickly turns physical," he said. "As they waited to refuel their vehicle, Mr. Sibley and his group began dancing to music that was being played in their car. At this point, a male called out to Mr. Sibley and his group demanding that they stop dancing," Kenny said. "As the group began to yell at Mr. Sibley and his friends, they began to call him derogatory names and use homophobic slurs against him."

(More New York City stories.)

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