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Suspect Charged With Murder in O’Shae Sibley Stabbing Death in Brooklyn


A 17-year-old has been charged with murder as a hate crime and criminal possession of a weapon following the July 29 stabbing of O’Shae Sibley. The individual, who authorities have not identified due to them being a minor, turned themself into the NYPD on Friday, Aug. 4.  

Joseph Kenny, assistant chief at the NYPD’s detective bureau, said Saturday that the suspect was a student at a high school near where Sibley was stabbed. As of now, the 17-year-old is the only person who will face charges following the incident. It’s unclear whether they’ll go to trial as an adult.

“This is a city where you are free to express yourself, and that expression should never end with any form of violence,” Mayor Eric Adams said Saturday at the press conference at the Midwood, Brooklyn gas station where Sibley was killed.

Sibley, a 28-year-old professional dancer for the likes of Alvin Ailey and various dance troops in New York  City, was killed last Saturday night after an altercation with a group of men at the Mobil Gas Station at 1921 Coney Island Avenue in Brooklyn, New York, at 11:14 p.m. Sibley and his friends had made a pit stop to get gas after a full Saturday spent at the beach for a friend’s birthday. The group had been dancing and vogueing to Beyonce’s Renaissance album, which was being performed live an hour away at Met Stadium for the New Jersey/New York leg of her tour, when they were approached by a group of men who ordered them to stop dancing. 

According to a Facebook post by one of Sibley’s best friend, Otis Pena, whose birthday the friend’s were celebrating and who held Sibley’s wound until police got on the scene, the men had stated “We [are] Muslims and do not like gays!” In a livestream, Pena said “They killed my brother” as he explained how Sibley had attempted to diffuse the situation while also sticking up for his community telling the men at the gas station that, “We may be gay but we exist, we’re not going to live in fear. We’re not going to live in hiding.”  According to Pena, this is when the scuffle broke out and Sibley was stabbed in the chest.

New York State Senator Brad Hoylman-Signal, who is gay, addressed the attack on Monday. “Heartbroken and enraged to learn about O’Shae Sibley’s death this weekend in New York,” he wrote in a social media post. “Despite homophobes’ best efforts, gay joy is not crime. Hate-fueled attacks are.”

On Wednesday, Beyoncé paid tribute to Sibley by posting the words, “Rest in Power O’Shae Sibley” across her website’s homepage. 

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Sibley’s death has been the second death this month in the New York City area, in which a hate crime or foul play is suspected. On July 6, 2023, Fernielle Mary Mora, a trans woman from the Bronx, was found dead in her apartment following threats to her life. In a report from June 2022, the United States Department of Justice concluded that the rate of violence amongst gay, lesbian, and bisexual persons over the age of 16 was more than two times (43.5 per 1,000 persons) the rate of heterosexual-identifying people. The rate of violence against transgender persons was even higher, being 2.5 times (51.5 per 1,000 persons) the rate of cisgender persons. 

This story was updated Saturday, August 5 with the charges against the 17-year-old suspect.





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