Man accused in journalist’s slaying says he never killed anyone
By Thomas Peele, The Chauncey Bailey Project
OAKLAND — Accused triple killer Antoine Mackey testified Tuesday that he didn’t kill or help kill anyone, including journalist Chauncey Bailey, while working at Your Black Muslim Bakery in summer 2007.
Taking the stand in his own defense, Mackey said that Devaughndre Broussard — the man who confessed to killing Bailey and said Mackey helped — was angry with him for having sex with women in whom he also had an interest.
Broussard, Mackey said, “roughed up” a girl he liked after she and Mackey had sex. Outside court, Mackey’s lawyer, Gary Sirbu, said jurors “will infer” that Broussard was motivated by anger and jealousy to lie that Mackey committed murders.
Broussard testified that Mackey acted as the getaway driver following the Aug. 2, 2007, shooting of Bailey and that Mackey helped in the shooting death of Oakland man Odell Roberson on July 8, 2007. Broussard also said Mackey bragged about killing a third man, Michael Wills, on July 12, 2007. Bakery leader Yusuf Bey IV ordered all the killings, Broussard said.
But Mackey told the jury of seven men and five women that he had nothing to do with the deaths. Mackey and Bey IV, both 25, have pleaded not guilty to all charges.
Mackey said was working at the bakery when Bailey and Wills were killed and was in his bedroom when Roberson was shot, and happened upon the Roberson shooting scene just as police arrived after deciding to walk to a nearby store to buy candy.
Mackey also refuted earlier testimony in which Broussard said Mackey drove by and sat outside Bailey’s apartment building near Lake Merritt seven hours before the journalist was shot.
In recorded interviews, Bey IV told both Oakland police and District Attorney’s Office investigators that he, Mackey and Broussard sat outside the journalist’s apartment. Bey IV first denied the visit, but later changed his story when confronted with evidence from a police tracking device hidden on his car.
But those tapes have not been used as evidence in the two-month trial because of legal rules that don’t allow evidence from one co-defendant to be used against the other. Mackey isn’t on the recordings, only Bey.
A 1968 U.S. Supreme Court ruling precludes prosecutor Melissa Krum from introducing the videotape of Bey IV’s statement to police.
“The basic idea is that the constitution guarantees every criminal defendant a right to confront the witnesses against him, and the Supreme Court has said that right can be compromised if the prosecution introduces a statement taken outside of court from the other defendant,” explained University of California, Berkeley Boalt Hall Law Professor David Sklansky, who chairs the Berkeley Center for Criminal Justice.
In this case, introducing Bey IV’s videotaped statement to police in an effort to incriminate Mackey wouldn’t fly, because Mackey would have no opportunity to cross-examine Bey IV, who in turn has a constitutional right not to testify at trial.
Sirbu declined outside court to discuss the apparent contradiction in Bey IV’s taped statement and the testimony.
“Mackey’s testimony speaks for itself,” he said.
Broussard testified in March that Bey IV ordered him and Mackey to kill Bailey to stop the journalist from writing about the bakery in the Oakland Post. Broussard told jurors he killed Roberson with Mackey’s help and that Mackey and Bey IV bragged about killing Wills because they wanted to “get a white devil.”
Mackey took the stand about 10 a.m. Tuesday. When the trial broke more than a week ago, Judge Thomas Reardon told jurors to expect closing arguments to begin Tuesday. Instead, Mackey, in a light brown shirt and dark tie, took the stand as the trial resumed.
“I want to tell my side of the story, so to speak,” he said.
In early testimony, Mackey said he bore no hatred toward white people and never heard Bey IV preach at the bakery about racial hatred.
Mackey said he went to work at the bakery after desperately seeking a way out of San Francisco in June 2007 after being shot for the third time.
In two of those shootings, he said he barely survived. San Francisco police have said Mackey has an extensive history of gang involvement there.
Krum will begin cross examining Mackey when the trial resumes in the afternoon.
Reach investigative reporter Thomas Peele at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him at twitter.com/thomas_peele. Staff writer Josh Richman contributed to this report.