Chauncey Bailey Murder Trial, Day One
March 23, 2011
March 23, 2011
Approximately 1,329 days after Oakland Post editor Chauncey Bailey was killed in downtown Oakland, California, the trial for two men accused in the case began with the prosecution telling jurors, “every criminal charge in the indictment — the murder of Mr. Bailey, Mr. (Odell) Roberson, Mr. (Michael) Wills and the shooting up of Mr. (Cameryn) Cook’s car were done upon the orders of Yusuf Bey IV for the benefit of Yusuf Bey IV and Your Black Muslim Bakery.”
Deputy district attorney Melissa Krum then spent two hours explaining the circumstances that she alleges ended with then-19 year old Devaughndre Broussard and Antoine Mackey stalking Bailey on the morning on August 2, 2007 and Broussard killing Bailey with three blasts from a shotgun. The following is a synthesis of her statement. Some of the detail comes from Broussard’s grand jury testimony in April 2009.
Your Black Muslim Bakery was opened in the early 1970’s by Yusuf Bey, variously called, ‘Dr. Bey, or Yusuf Bey, Sr.” The bakery was his place of business and his mosque. Consistent with the practices of the Nation of Islam, the bakery was one of the few places where ex-convicts could be employed.
But the bakery also had a dark side. Several of the bakery’s members got into scrapes with the law and Bey was facing charges of impregnating teen-age followers. The story was reported widely in the media and Chauncey Bailey was one of many reporters writing about the case. This did not sit well with members of Your Black Muslim Bakery.
The elder Bey died in October, 2003. He left the bakery in the hands of his Carl Hambrick, a spiritually-adopted son who took the name Waajiid Aljawaad Bey. Aljawaad disappeared in February 2004, 4 months after the elder Bey’s death. 19-year old Antar Bey (Antar) announced he was now in charge. Members of the bakery’s board of directors were ousted or left out of fear of their own safety.
The bakery quickly experienced financial trouble. Antar took out loans totaling approximately $700,000 and the loans quickly became delinquent. Antar was killed on October 25, 2005 in an attempted carjacking. A man named Lafonza Phillips, Jr. was arrested and convicted of murder.
At the age of 19-years old Yusuf Bey, IV (Fourth) became the Chief Executive Officer of your Black Muslim Bakery. He filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy.
About the same time, Ali Saleem Bey (Saleem), another adopted son of the elder Bey and a member of the board of directors, began efforts to intervene in the bankruptcy.
“He tried but failed.” said Krum. “He turned to the courts, he turned to politicians and he eventually turned to Chauncey Bailey about Fourth and the demise of Your Black Muslim Bakery.”
According to Krum, Fourth recruited, trained and housed soldiers at the bakery complex. He “recruited outsiders — groomed them to test their obedience and loyalty to the greater good, ie: Yusuf Bey IV and Your Black Muslim Bakery.” Two of these men were Devaughndre Broussard and Antoine Mackey. “They became his security, his personal bodyguards. By security I mean they walked around the streets of the bakery at night, telling prostitutes, drug-dealers and the homeless to leave the area.”
In June 2007, Fourth, Broussard and Mackey attend the trial of Alfonza Phillips, the man accused of killing Antar. Krum said Broussard told the grand jury that Fourth asked him and Mackey to “do homework” on Alfonza Phillips, Sr. — find out where he lives and what he drives. He planned to “take him out, an eye for an eye.” They do but they can’t track his movements. Krum said Fourth eventually turns his attention to Odell Roberson, Alfonza Phillips’ uncle.
On July 7, 2007 Mackey and Fourth are walking security and see Roberson. According to Krum, Broussard tells Mackey, “I got this one.” Mackey hands Broussard and SKS assault rifle and Broussard opens fire as Roberson tries to run away, hitting him 5 times in the back.
Five days later, Broussard is working in the bakery and hears gunshots. Fourth calls Broussard and orders him to open the gate to the bakery parking lot. Fourth drives in and goes into the house. Mackey tells Broussard he and Fourth were riding around in Fourth’s Dodge Charger discussing the 1970’s Zebra murders in San Francisco, in which four Black men were convicted of killing Whites. They happened upon Michael Wills, a White sous-chef who had walked to a corner store for a pack of cigarettes. “Mackey jumped out of the car with the SKS, chased Wills down and shot him 6 times,” said Krum.
A few weeks later, on July 11, Fourth and Saleem had a meeting in the offices of Oakland Congresswoman Barbara Lee. Fourth wanted a letter of support to present to the bankruptcy court at a hearing on a creditor’s motion to convert the Chapter 11 to a Chapter 7 liquidation scheduled for August 9. The letter is approved by a staffer but, on July 31, Representative Lee says the letter was approved by mistake.
Around that time. Fourth, Mackey and Broussard are watching a videotape of the elder Bey’s 2003 funeral. Fourth stops the tape and tells the men, “that’s the (MF) that killed my dad,” pointing to a still shot of Chauncey Bailey. “As a matter of fact, he’s writing an article right now and Saleem is his source.
On August 1st, Fourth instructs Mackey and Broussard to “do homework” on Chauncey Bailey. Mackey and Broussard go to the Oakland Post and sees an SUV that he recognizes as Saleem’s. He calls Fourth. Krum says Broussard will testify that Fourth said, “I should probably “do him, too, but my sister would me mad.” Saleem is married to one of Fourth’s biological sisters.
That night all three men are at the bakery and, according to Krum, “Fourth decides this needs to happen. They get in the Charger and go to Bailey’s apartment and plan the hit. Fourth talks about escape routes and decides, since Mackey shot Wills on July 12th, ‘it was Broussard’s turn.'”
The next morning Mackey and Broussard set off in a borrowed van with no license plates. They see Bailey walking to work. Mackey parks the van and Broussard, dressed all in black wearing a ski mask, jumps out, runs up to Bailey and shoots him 3 times.
Fourth, says Krum, promised to reward Mackey and Broussard by showing them how to use credit to get free money, cars, even houses.