OAKLAND (CBS 5 / KCBS) — After a wait of more than three and a half years, former Your Black Muslim Bakery leader Yusuf Bey IV and associate Antoine Mackey went on trial Monday for three counts of murder in the deaths of Oakland journalist Chauncey Bailey, who was investigating the bakery, and two other men during the summer of 2007.
KCBS’ Dave Padilla Reports:
A jury of 12 and five alternates were finally seated to hear the high-profile case Monday morning out of a narrowed-down pool of 109 remaining prospective jurors. Jury selection for the trial began in late January.
In opening statements Monday afternoon, Alameda County prosecutor Melissa Krum told jurors that Bey ordered Bailey’s killing, while Mackey drove the getaway van.
Bailey, the editor of the Oakland Post newspaper and a former reporter for the Oakland Tribune, was investigating the nonprofit bakery for an article he was about to publish when he was gunned down Aug. 2, 2007 on a downtown Oakland street.
Krum maintained that Bey ordered the killing because he didn’t like stories that Bailey had written about Bey’s father, bakery founder Yusuf Bey. Bailey also reportedly planned to write a story about the bakery’s financial problems.
The bakery went bankrupt and closed its doors in late 2007. The elder Bey, who founded the bakery in 1968, died of cancer in October 2003 while waiting to stand trial on charges of forcible rape, oral copulation and sodomy.
KCBS’ Janice Wright Reports:
The confessed gunman in Bailey’s slaying, Devaughndre Broussard, struck a plea deal and is currently serving a 25-year sentence. He was expected to testify against against Bey and Mackey.
Broussard, a former handyman at the bakery, pleaded guilty on May 7, 2009, to two counts of voluntary manslaughter for fatally shooting both Bailey and Odell Roberson, 31, who was killed on July 8, 2007.
Krum said that Bey, 25, wanted Roberson killed out of revenge. Roberson was the uncle of Alfonza Phillips, who was convicted of murdering Bey’s brother, Antar Bey, on Oct. 25, 2005.
Broussard, who’s also 25, told prosecutors in 2009 that Mackey helped lure Roberson to his death and drove the car that was used in Bailey’s killing.
Broussard also said that Mackey shot and killed the third victim in the case, 36-year-old Michael Wills, on July 12, 2007.
Krum alleged that Bey ordered Wills’ killing because of “racial animus.” Wills was white and Bey, who is black, randomly spotted him on the street near the bakery, according to Krum.
Broussard told prosecutors that Bey said his inspiration to have Wills killed was the so-called “Zebra killings” in San Francisco in the 1970s in which black suspects allegedly killed white victims simply because of the color of their skin.
Gene Peretti, who represents Bey, and Gary Sirbu, Mackey’s attorney, were expected to give their opening statements on Tuesday.
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