Two of three defendants charged with first-degree murder for the 2011 beating death of a homeless Shawnee man pleaded not guilty when in appearing in court for their arraignments on Wednesday.

Two of three defendants charged with first-degree murder for the 2011 beating death of a homeless Shawnee man pleaded not guilty when in appearing in court for their arraignments on Wednesday.

The defendants are charged in the death of Alan Wade Branscum, 54, a native of Arkansas who was living homeless in Shawnee when he died.

He was found murdered Aug. 6, 2011, under the Beard Street Bridge in the 800 block of South Beard.

On Wednesday, defendants Keenan Allen Thorpe, 24, of McLoud, and Anthony Neal Wood, 21, Shawnee, had their cases set separately on the felony docket, where both pleaded not guilty. They are now scheduled for another court date on April 29.

The third defendant charged in this case, Leland Dale Blanchard Jr., 20, previously pleaded not guilty and is scheduled to appear in court again on Feb. 19.

All three defendants are accused of unlawfully, and with malice aforethought, striking Branscum multiple times in the head, face and body, the charge shows. The state medical examiner ruled Branscum died of blunt force trauma.

For the first two years of the investigation, Branscum’s death was an unsolved homicide. But in the summer of 2013, Shawnee police were pursuing a new lead based on a tip, which developed into police piecing together information after talking with several people. That tip led to the arrest of three suspects.

According to the arrest warrants in the case, a witness reported he allegedly saw three suspects beating on a man. The suspects were allegedly at the river to drink alcohol when they first encountered Branscum sleeping under the bridge, the affidavit shows. A witness later heard loud screaming and cursing as some type of altercation was occurring.

All three defendants in this case remain jailed without bond in the Pottawatomie County Public Safety Center.

Watch for updates.