Four years ago, Chauncey Bailey, the 57 year-old editor of the Oakland Post, was working on a story about the shady finances of Your Black Muslim Bakery, a longtime community institution with criminal tendencies. As he was walking down the street one day, a man walked up and murdered him with a shotgun. It was a hit, a consequence of his work. And yesterday, he finally got justice.
Two men were convicted of first degree murder yesterday: Yusuf Bey IV, the 25 year-old owner of Your Black Muslim Bakery, who ordered that Bailey be killed because of the story he was working on; and 25 year-old Antoine Mackey, one of the men who participated in the killing. They'll both get life in prison without parole. The actual gunman, Devaughdre Brousard, testified against the others, and is expected to get a 25-year sentence.
Bailey's murder spawned the Chauncey Bailey Project, an extensive collaborative effort by Bay Area news outlets to get all of the facts and seek justice in the case. It worked. (Although not without its fair share of sniping among members seeking credit.)
At least an incident like this is rare enough in America that it still causes a fundamental sense of outrage. Other than that, what a sick, sick waste.
[LAT. Photo: AP]