Jury sees secret video of Oakland bakery leader

April 20, 2011 6:50:16 PM PDT
Potentially damning evidence was played in an Oakland courtroom Wednesday for jurors in the Chauncey Bailey murder trial. For the first time, jurors saw for themselves a key piece of evidence in the murder trial -- a secretly recorded video showing Yusuf Bey IV laughing and joking as he talks about the journalist's murder.

The video was taken just days after Bailey was gunned down in downtown Oakland. Investigators tricked the former leader of Your Black Muslim Bakery, his half-brother and a bakery associate, recording them as they sat together in a police department holding cell. During the hour-long video, the men alternated between laughing and whispering.

Bey IV tells them the night before police raided his house, he took the shotgun used to kill Bailey out of his bedroom closet and handed it over to the bakery associates accused of carrying out the hit at his request. In the video, Bey IV says he was not there when the fatal shots were fired.

Bey IV reportedly told investigators he knew that he was being recorded inside that holding cell, but that he lied in that holding room in order to confuse police. But outside the court, Bey IV's lawyer said it is unclear whether Bey IV knew police were listening to the conversation.

"It's equivocal frankly. When you listen to the tape and the details of the tape there's some part in the tape that suggests he may have known that there's other -- obviously I think ultimately he probably wasn't paying too much attention whether he was being taped," said Bey IV's lawyer, Gene Piretti.

While defense attorneys called the video inflammatory, prosecutors say it shows Bey IV gleeful about Bailey's murder. The district attorney hopes to convince the jury the bakery leader ordered the Oakland Post editor assassinated to stop the publication of an article about the bakery's financial troubles.

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