PHOENIX (AP) - Not guilty pleas to nine murder charges have been entered for the man accused of carrying out serial killings in Phoenix last year.
A judge entered the pleas for 23-year-old Aaron Saucedo after defense attorneys waived Saucedo's presence in the courtroom for his arraignment Thursday.
Saucedo was indicted last week on charges accusing him of fatally shooting nine people and wounding two others during a nearly one-year period that ended in July 2016.
The attacks terrified people living in the Maryvale neighborhood of Phoenix, a mostly Latino community where all but two of the killings occurred. Residents stayed indoors at night amid the height of fear over the killings last summer.
News media attorney David Bodney said Saucedo's lawyers waived Saucedo's presence after Commissioner Thomas Kaipio of Maricopa County Superior Court granted a media request to allow a camera in the courtroom.
Kaipio considered the camera request during a brief closed-door hearing before Saucedo's arraignment.
Saucedo proclaimed during a court hearing in May that he was innocent.
A Dec.14 trial date was previously set for Saucedo stemming from the death of his mom's boyfriend in 2015. He was also charged with murder in that case.