NEW YORK – Beyoncé paid tribute to a professional dancer who was fatally stabbed at a New York City gas station while vogueing to her music on Saturday.
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O’Shae Sibley, 28, was filling up a car with gasoline and was blasting music by the 32-time Grammy Award winner when a group of men approached and told him to stop dancing, The New York Times reported.
The men began using slurs, and Sibley, a gay man who was also a choreographer, confronted them and was stabbed after the argument escalated, according to the newspaper. He was taken to an area hospital, where he later died.
“REST IN POWER O’SHAE SIBLEY,” Beyoncé, 41, wrote on her website.
Sibley worked professionally as a dancer in New York and Philadelphia and belonged to several dance troupes in the region, WNBC-TV reported.
According to the Times, vogueing is a style of interpretive dance that began as an imitation of fashion models in the 1980s and has evolved as an expression of LGBTQ pride and protest.
Police are searching for a 17-year-old believed to be responsible for the fatal stabbing, according to CNN.
Witnesses said that the group that confronted Sibley and his friends did not like the way they were dancing, WNBC reported.
“He had a problem with them dancing, he wanted them to stop dancing, he started arguing with them,” Sayeda Haider, who witnessed the stabbing, told the television station about the alleged assailant. “And then after a few fights and back and forth arguing, he pulled out a knife and stabbed him.”
Otis Pena, a friend of Sibley, attempted to stop the bleeding at the scene, the Times reported.
“They murdered him because he’s gay, because he stood up for his friends,” Pena said in a Facebook video posted several hours after the stabbing. “His name was O’Shae and you all killed him. You all murdered him right in front of me.”
No arrests have been made, but the New York City Police Department said that the hate crimes unit is involved in the investigation.
Brad Hoylman-Sigal, a gay state senator in New York, said he was “heartbroken and enraged” over Sibley’s killing.
“Gay joy is not crime,” Hoylman-Sigan tweeted. “Hate-fueled attacks are.”
“It was a senseless crime,” the victim’s aunt, Tondra Sibley, 49, told the Times. “O’Shae has always been a peacemaker. All he wanted to do was dance.”
Here are some memorable photos of Beyonce through the years.
1998: Destiny’s Child performs at halftime of the New York Giants vs. New York Jets game on August 20, 1998, at Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.
1999: Destiny’s Child, LeToya Luckett, LaTavia Robertson, Kelly Rowland and Beyonce Knowles, at the 13th annual Soul Train Music Awards at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles in 1999.
2000: Destiny’s Child at the 2000 Source Hip-Hop Music Awards.
2001: Destiny’s Child attends the 2001 Radio Music Awards at the Aladdin Resort and Casino on October 26, 2001, in Las Vegas.
2002: Beyonce Knowles, Kelly Rowland and Michelle Williams of Destiny’s Child pose backstage during the 44th annual Grammy Awards at Staples Center February 27, 2002, in Los Angeles.
2003: Singer Beyonce Knowles performs onstage during the 2003 MTV Europe Music Awards at Ocean Terminal on November 6, 2003, in Edinburgh, Scotland.
2004: Singer/actress Beyonce Knowles poses backstage after winning five Grammy Awards in the press room at the 46th annual Grammy Awards held on February 8, 2004, at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
2005: Singer Beyonce Knowles arrives at the 77th annual Academy Awards at the Kodak Theater on February 27, 2005, in Hollywood, California.
2006: Rapper Jay-Z and singer Beyonce Knowles perform onstage at the 2006 BET Awards at the Shrine Auditorium on June 27, 2006, in Los Angeles.
2007: Singer Beyonce Knowles arrives at the 64th annual Golden Globe Awards at the Beverly Hilton on January 15, 2007, in Beverly Hills, California.
2008: Singer Beyonce Knowles performs onstage during the 2008 American Music Awards held at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE on November 23, 2008, in Los Angeles.
2009: Singer Beyonce Knowles arrives at the 81st annual Academy Awards held at Kodak Theatre on February 22, 2009, in Los Angeles.
2010: Singers Beyonce Knowles (left) and Rihanna backstage during the 52nd annual Grammy Awards held at Staples Center on January 31, 2010, in Los Angeles.
2011: Singer Beyonce arrives at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE on August 28, 2011, in Los Angeles.
2012: Beyonce Knowles attends the "Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations" Costume Institute Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 7, 2012, in New York City.
2013: Singer Beyonce performs during the Pepsi Super Bowl XLVII Halftime Show at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on February 3, 2013, in New Orleans.
2014: Jay-Z and Beyonce attend the "Charles James: Beyond Fashion" Costume Institute Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 5, 2014, in New York City.
2015: Beyonce and Jay Z attend the "China: Through the Looking Glass" Costume Institute Benefit Gala at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 4, 2015, in New York City.
2016: Beyonce, Chris Martin of Coldplay and Bruno Mars perform onstage during the Pepsi Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show at Levi’s Stadium on February 7, 2016, in Santa Clara, California.
2017: Singer Beyonce during the 59th Grammy Awards at Staples Center on February 12, 2017, in Los Angeles.
2018: Beyonce Knowles performs onstage during 2018 Coachella Valley Music And Arts Festival Weekend 1 at the Empire Polo Field on April 14, 2018, in Indio, California.
2019: Beyonce Knowles-Carter attends the European Premiere of Disney’s "The Lion King" at Odeon Luxe Leicester Square on July 14, 2019, in London.
2020: Jay-Z and Beyoncé attend the Pre-Grammy Gala and Grammy Salute to Industry Icons Honoring Sean "Diddy" Combs on January 25, 2020, in Beverly Hills, California.
2021: Beyoncé accepts the Best Rap Performance award for "Savage" onstage during the 63rd annual Grammy Awards at Los Angeles Convention Center on March 14, 2021, in Los Angeles.
2022: In this handout photo provided by AMPAS, Beyoncé performs during the ABC telecast of the 94th Oscars on Sunday, March 27, 2022, in Los Angeles.