General Crime

* Yusuf Bey IV is charged with the killings of a journalist and two other men was assigned today in Oakland

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A courtroom was assigned today for the trial of former Your Black Muslim Bakery leader Yusuf Bey IV, who is charged with the killings of journalist Chauncey Bailey and two other men in Oakland. Bey is being tried together with Antoine Mackey, 24, a former bakery employee accused of participating in all three murders. “I’m pleased that the actual trial process has started and I look forward to jury selection,” prosecutor Melissa Krum said. However, jury selection for the trial won’t start until January, and testimony won’t begin until late January or February. Bey is accused of ordering the killing of Bailey, 57, who was shot as he walked to his job as editor of the Oakland Post on the morning of Aug. 2, 2007. Bailey was working on a story about the bakery’s financial problems. Bey was arrested in a massive police raid at the bakery the next day. Later in 2007, the bakery, which was founded by Bey’s father, Yusuf Bey in 1968, went bankrupt and closed. On May 7, 2009, bakery handyman Devaughndre Broussard pleaded guilty to two counts of voluntary manslaughter for fatally shooting Bailey and another man, 31-year-old Odell Roberson Jr., who was killed on July 8, 2007. Broussard, 22, who faces a 25-year state prison term, told prosecutors that Bey ordered him to kill Bailey and also wanted him to kill Roberson because Roberson was the uncle of the man who was convicted of murdering Bey’s older brother, Antar Bey, at an Oakland gas station on Oct. 25, 2005. Broussard also told prosecutors that Bey IV ordered the murder of 36-year-old Michael Wills on July 12, 2007. Broussard said Mackey killed Wills, helped lure Roberson to his death and drove the car that was used in the killing of Bailey. A plea agreement that Broussard signed with the Alameda County District Attorney’s Office on April 15, 2009, calls for him to testify against Bey and Mackey in return for being allowed to plead guilty to manslaughter charges instead of murder charges. Alameda County Superior Court Judge Thomas Reardon, who is presiding over the case, will hold a hearing on Nov. 30 on jury selection issues. Another hearing is scheduled for Dec. 16 on the defense’s motion to dismiss the charges and the prosecution’s motion to introduce evidence about alleged prior “bad acts” by Bey. Gary Sirbu, the defense attorney for Mackey, is considering filing a motion to have Mackey tried separately from Bey but said he won’t decide on that until he sees how Reardon rules at the Dec. 16 hearing.

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