Not-guilty plea from man accused of stabbing, killing former ASU football player

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas
By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The man accused of killing former Arizona State University football player Tyrice Thompson outside Martini Ranch has entered a plea of not guilty.

Ian MacDonald, 26, was arraigned Monday morning on a charge of second-degree murder.

Investigators say Thompson was working security at the popular bar on Jan. 27 when MacDonald and his girlfriend were asked to leave.

A fight broke out in the parking lot. Thompson was stabbed five times.

Police first arrested and questioned MacDonald a few days after the incident, but released him while their continued their investigation.

According to police, MacDonald told friends that he had stabbed Thompson and asked for help disposing of the knife. Police have not found the murder weapon. They believe it was thrown in Dumpster in Mesa in the wake of the deadly stabbing.

MacDonald was again arrested in connection with Thompson's death, but has maintained his innocence.

"They [police] have no eyewitness to say he did it," said MacDonald's attorney Jeffrey Mehrens during MacDonald's initial appearance in court on Thursday. "They have no confession. They have no murder weapon. They have exactly nothing. They have him at the scene of a fight."

A judge set a $75,000 cash bond for MacDonald at his initial court appearance on Feb. 7.

MacDonald's next court date is April 8 before Commissioner Brian Kaiser.