A former bakery handyman pleaded guilty Thursday to killing two men, including an Oakland journalist who was writing about the bakery’s finances.
Devaughndre Broussard, 21, entered his plea to two counts of voluntary manslaughter as part of a deal with prosecutors. Broussard admitted to fatally shooting Oakland Post editor Chauncey Bailey in August 2007 and another man, Odell Roberson Jr. a month earlier.
Bailey’s sister, Lorelei Waqia, and father, Chauncey Bailey Sr., nodded their heads silently as Broussard told Alameda County Superior Court Judge Morris Jacobson he was guilty of manslaughter in Bailey’s death.
“I find that you absolutely understand what you are doing,” Jacobson told Broussard, adding that the deal with prosecutors requires “a lot” of Broussard.
Under the terms of the deal, Broussard will be sentenced to 25 years in prison in exchange for his testimony against two other bakery figures. He would have faced up to 32 years in prison if convicted at trial.
Broussard already has testified before a grand jury against Yusuf Bey IV, the leader of the now-defunct Your Black Muslim Bakery who allegedly ordered the killings of Bailey and Roberson, and bakery associate, Antoine Mackey, who allegedly drove the getaway van in the Bailey shooting and was the shooter in a third slaying.
Both are scheduled to enter their pleas to murder charges on May 13.
Broussard testified he carried out the slaying because he had been promised financial rewards.
His mother, Aundra Dixon, 42, said outside the courtroom Thursday she would stand by her son.
“I felt he was being responsible,” Dixon said. “He was taking responsibility for what he had done.”
Your Black Muslim Bakery was an institution in Oakland’s black community since it was founded more than 40 years ago, running a bakery, a school and providing security. But bakery members, including Bey, have been accused of involvement in several crimes, including a vandalism rampage of liquor stores in 2005 and the kidnapping and torture of two women in 2007.
Bailey, 57, was the editor of the Oakland Post, a newspaper focusing on African American issues. He was working on a story about the bakery’s financial troubles and internal fighting when he was gunned down on a downtown street on his way to work.
His family left the courtroom Thursday without commenting.