MARILLA, N.Y. (AP) — A 17-year-old has pleaded not guilty in the beating death of a 2-year-old boy he was babysitting in a western New York home.

Devon VanDerWege is being held without bail after appearing in court Thursday on a second-degree murder charge. He's accused of killing Ethan Bigham at a trailer home in rural Marilla, outside Buffalo.

Authorities say the toddler was severely beaten March 10 and later taken off life support at a Buffalo hospital.

In court Thursday, defense attorney John Gilmour requested that VanDerWege undergo a mental health evaluation to determine whether he can help in his defense.

Gilmour says that besides VanDerWege, there were several other adults and children staying in the small home and that VanDerWege maintains his innocence.

More From WIBX 950