Writer threatened during Bailey murder trial

By Frank Smyth/CPJ Washington Representative and Journalist Security Coordinator on April 13, 2011 1:20 PM ET

As the trial of suspects
charged with murdering Oakland,
Calif., reporter and editor Chauncey Bailey continued,
a reporter who has written dozens of articles about the case was himself threatened
as he investigated allegations
of real estate fraud
by a business tied to the suspects on trial.

"If you write that story, you are going to end up like your friend Chauncey," a male telephone caller told Josh Richman, a journalist for the Bay Area News Group. Richman was investigating alleged fraud involving an Oakland-area business called Your Black Muslim Bakery.

A former bakery employee, Devaughndre Broussard, has testified in court that his boss at the bakery, Yusuf Bey IV, ordered him to kill Bailey, the former editor of the Post Newspaper Group, in 2007 to stop Bailey from investigating the bakery. Bey denies all charges.

In an interview with the San Jose Mercury News, I condemned the threat.

"We would expect law enforcement authorities to take every possible precaution concerning these threats and bring the perpetrators to justice, especially considering the history of violence against journalists in the region," I told the Mercury News.

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