OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) _ A police sergeant testified that he did not promise to protect a former community group leader from charges in the murder of an Oakland journalist.
The testimony by Oakland police Sgt. Derwin Longmire came Tuesday during the ongoing trial of Yusuf Bey IV, former leader of Your Black Muslim Bakery, in the fatal shooting of Oakland Post editor Chauncey Bailey.
Prosecutors rested their case and the defense might give its opening statement and call witnesses beginning Wednesday.
Bey is accused in Alameda County Superior Court of ordering the killings of Bailey and two other men in 2007.
In a secretly recorded police video a day after Bailey was shot in downtown Oakland, Bey could be heard boasting to associates in custody that Longmire would make sure he wouldn't be charged in the journalist's death, the Contra Costa Times reported.
Longmire testified that Bey was lying about the claim.
“Did you make him any promises?'' prosecutor Melissa Krum asked.
“No, ma'am,'' Longmire replied.
The prosecution argues that Bey ordered Bailey's death on Aug. 3, 2007 to stop the journalist's investigation about financial troubles of the once-influential bakery.
Also on trial is co-defendant Antoine Mackey, a bakery associate accused of killing one man, assisting in another man's death and driving the getaway van after Bailey was shot.
Gene Peretti, Bey's lawyer, said outside court Tuesday that prosecutors had failed to prove the defendants are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
Peretti said he has advised Bey not to testify. Gary Sirbu, Mackey's attorney, declined to comment.