The defense attorney for Your Black Muslim Bakery leader Yusuf Bey IV asked a judge today to exclude the media and members of the public from his preliminary hearing on charges that he and several associates kidnapped and tortured two women in Oakland two years ago. “I don’t think I have seen a man who has been subjected to more pretrial publicity than he has in this case and the Chauncey Bailey murder,” attorney Anne Beles said of Bey, 23.Beles was referring to news reports quoting LeRue Grim, the attorney for former bakery handyman Devaughndre Broussard, saying that Broussard told an Alameda County grand jury last week that Bey ordered him to kill Bailey, 57, as he walked to his job as editor of the Oakland Post on Aug. 2, 2007.Grim said Broussard also told the grand jury that Bey ordered two other men to be killed in July 2007.According to Grim, the grand jury is considering indicting Bey in connection with those three homicides.Beles said, “Over the last three or four months, a week hasn’t gone by without allegations about Mr. Bey, mostly in connection with Chauncey Bailey’s homicide.”Beles told Alameda County Superior Court Judge Joseph Hurley that she wants him to “stem the tide of tainting the potential pool of jurors in this case.”But Hurley rejected Beles’ request and said he will allow the media and public to attend Bey’s hearing, which was scheduled to begin with live testimony at 1:30 p.m. today. Hurley planned to listen in his chambers to several taped statements in the case that Beles doesn’t want the public to hear to decide about whether they can be admitted into the case.Last Aug. 8, at the end of a preliminary hearing that spanned scattered days over nearly seven months, a judge ruled that there was sufficient evidence to have Bey and three other defendants stand trial on charges that they kidnapped and tortured the two women on May 17, 2007, allegedly to try to get money from them.But on April 10 another judge dismissed the case for technical legal reasons, ruling that the defendants hadn’t waived their right to have the preliminary hearing conducted on consecutive days.The Alameda County District Attorney’s office re-filed charges three days later.Last week, the other three defendants waived their right to have a second preliminary hearing and agreed to have their cases set for trial.But Bey insisted on having a second preliminary hearing.Although multiple witnesses testified at the first hearing, prosecutor Scott Patton said today that he only plans to call one witness in the second preliminary hearing in an effort to expedite the case.He said the witness is Jesse Grant of the Oakland Police Department.
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