Hackworth and Ray Arraignment

By Amy Bingham | 

A couple accused of beating a man to death with a baseball bat pleads not guilty to murder charges.

Christopher Hackworth and Tonya Ray are accused in the beating death of Lee Johnson. Johnson was found dead inside his apartment on Kenilwood Way July 16, 2006. Police say he was killed by several blows to the head with a baseball bat.

Today Hackworth pleaded not guilty to murder, burglary, robbery and being a persistent felony offender. Ray pleaded not guilty to murder by complicity, burglary, first degree and robbery first degree by complicity.

A pretrial conference is set for Oct. 10, 2006. The case is expected to move to Judge Wilson's court because Judge Grise's wife was the boss of the victim s mother.