NEW YORK — A teenager accused of a fatal stabbing at a suburban New York movie theater has pleaded not guilty to murder and other charges.

Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino Jr. says 16-year-old Michael Pettiford was arraigned Monday after his indictment in the death of 19-year-old theater worker Daij (dayj) Thomas.

The violence occurred around 12:30 a.m. on April 15 at the Showcase Cinema de Lux at the upscale Ridge Hill mall in Yonkers.

Police said the two teens knew each other.

Authorities say the attacker approached Thomas in the lobby, tried to get him to fight and grabbed his phone. Thomas was stabbed in the chest during a struggle over the phone.

Pettiford’s attorney, Judith Permutt, declined to comment.

Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.