After “a heated verbal dispute,” the teen stabbed Sibley once in the chest, hitting his heart, Kenny said. The teen then fled in his car, Kenny said at a news briefing Saturday at the Mobil gas station where the stabbing occurred.
The teenager lives in Brooklyn and is a high school student. Authorities identified him with help from the public, and he surrendered to police on Friday, they said.
He is the only person authorities expect to charge in the killing, Kenny said. He indicated that the teen, who was not identified because he is a minor, had retained a lawyer.
Sibley was a professional dancer and choreographer who has been remembered by friends as a joyful, spirited and proud young man. He was a member of New York City’s house and ballroom community, “an amazing dancer,” Lee Soulja-Simmons, executive director of the NYC Center for Black Pride, said at the news conference. Sibley moved to the city from Philadelphia, following his dreams.
“It’s very sad that he, as being the talent that he was,” Soulja-Simmons said, “was never able to reach his full potential.”
“The fact that he was doing nothing more but vogueing and dancing here — he did not deserve to die,” Soulja-Simmons said.
Sibley and his friends were on their way home from New Jersey when they stopped at the Brooklyn Mobil station. While waiting for their tank to fill, they danced to Beyoncé music playing from their car, Kenny said.
In the video footage, the teen calls out to Sibley’s group, “demanding that they stop dancing,” Kenny said. “They call him derogatory names and use homophobic slurs against him. They also made anti-Black statements, all while demanding that they simply stop dancing.”
The others in the teen’s group began to disperse, Kenny said, but the teen stayed and assaulted Sibley.
“Young O’Shae was a dancer, dancing to one of our most iconic artists, Beyoncé, just enjoying what everyday New Yorkers do … the freedom of expressing himself,” Mayor Eric Adams said Saturday.
Paulina Villegas contributed to this report, which will be updated.