Broussard admits killing Chauncey Bailey
By Paul Rosynsky, The Chauncey Bailey Project
OAKLAND — Devaughndre Broussard, a handyman at the now defunct Your Black Muslim Bakery, admitted on Thursday to killing Chauncey Bailey as part of plea deal in which he agreed to give prosecutors evidence that the journalist’s murder and two other slayings were ordered by bakery leader Yusuf Bey IV.
Broussard, 21, also admitted killing Odell Roberson about a month before Bailey’s slaying. Both murders, Broussard has said, were ordered by Bey IV.
Broussard pleaded guilty to two counts of voluntary manslaughter after an exhaustive review of his plea deal and extensive questioning about it from Alameda County Superior Court Judge Morris Jacobson.
At one point, Broussard appeared irritated with the process, shouting a “yes” at Jacobson after the judge motioned him to speak up.
Broussard responded with “yes” after almost every question, indicating he understood the deal and the consequences he faces having pleaded guilty to two counts of voluntary manslaughter.
Under the deal, Broussard was found guilty of the voluntary manslaughter charges rather than two counts of murder and will spend 25 years in prison instead of the rest of his life.
In exchange, the San Francisco native must testify, as he did secretly to a criminal grand jury, during the murder trials of Bey IV, 23, and Antoine Mackey, 23, both of whom are charged in the murder of Bailey.
Bailey’s family watched in silence as Broussard admitted killing the reporter and declined to comment afterward, leaving the courtroom through a back entrance.
Meanwhile, Broussard’s mother said her son acted responsibly.
“I felt like he was being responsible,” said Aundra Dixon, 42. “As a mother I am hurt (but) I respect him for being responsible.”
Broussard’s guilty plea was entered one week after a grand jury indicted Bey IV on three counts of murder for allegedly ordering Broussard and Mackey to kill Bailey before he could publish a story in the Oakland Post about financial problems at the bakery.
That indictment came after Broussard spent a day telling grand jury members about his life at the bakery and how Bey IV ordered killings and kept a hit list at the organization’s headquarters.
In addition to indicting Bey IV for ordering Bailey’s murder, the grand jury found that Bey IV told Broussard and Mackey to kill Roberson because his nephew killed Bey IV’s brother and for telling Mackey to kill Michael Wills, a white man, because, according to Broussard’s statement to prosecutors, he was “a devil.”
The grand jury indicted Broussard on two counts of murder as well but his deal with Alameda County prosecutors allowed him to plead guilty to the lesser, voluntary manslaughter.
Broussard’s mother said she still cannot understand why her son killed two people because someone told him to do so.
“When he first admitted to me that he had something to do with Chauncey Bailey’s death, I was shocked,” she said. “Why would he do something like that based on what somebody else said?”