Queen Bey took to her website on Tuesday to honor O'Shae Sibley, who was fatally stabbed after dancing to Renaissance with his friends.
Sibley, a 28-year-old gay man who was a professional dancer, and some friends were reportedly dancing and voguing to Beyoncé’s music when a group of men approached them. The group of men allegedly called Sibley and his friends antigay slurs.
After a scuffle, one of the men from the other group stabbed Sibley. He died after being taken to a local hospital.
The suspect, who police say is 17 years old, ran from the scene. The entire incident was captured on the gas station’s surveillance camera. The case is being investigated as a potential hate crime by the NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force.
On Tuesday, the Grammy-winning icon’s website read “Rest in Power O’Shea Sibley.”
Sibley was a dancer and was active in the ballroom scene. It’s that exact music and dance scene that inspired Beyoncé’s most recent album Renaissance. The legendary performer even dedicated the album to her late Uncle Johnny, an out gay man. Renaissance also featured a variety of queer producers and creatives on its tracks.
Family and friends have been left devastated by the violent attack. Public officials have also spoken out against Sibley's death.
“They murdered him because he’s gay, because he stood up for his friends,” Otis Pena, one of Sibley’s friends who was with him when he was killed, said in a video posted to Facebook.
He added, “His name was O’Shae and you all killed him. You all murdered him right in front of me.”
His aunt, Tondra Sibley, told the New York Times, “O’Shae has always been a peacemaker. All he wanted to do was dance.”
“It was a senseless crime,” she said.
Gay U.S. Rep. Ritchie Torres, a Democrat from New York, said in a statement that Sibley’s death was “a shocking act of homophobic hate.”
“Sibley was murdered because of who he was. As an openly gay Black man myself, I feel deeply in my heart that ours should be a city and a country where we are free to be who we are without fear of intimidation, harassment, violence, and murder,” Torres said. “An attack on the LGBTQI+ community is an attack on all of us as free people.”
A GoFundMe set up by Sibley's father has raised more than $27,000 dollars to go toward covering the costs related to his unexpected death.
I'm so sick and tired of all of this senseless violence, particularly towards QPOCs and black trans women. O'Shae didn't need to have his life taken just for being himself. I hope when they finally lock this kid up they throw him under the jail.
If you guys are interested, there will be a protest this Friday at the very gas station O'Shae was killed at.