A 21-year-old man has pleaded not guilty in last week's fatal stabbing of southwest Missouri high school student.

KOLR-TV reports Jesus Padilla, of Nixa, was arraigned Monday on charges of second-degree murder and armed criminal action.

Padilla's court appearance came one day after hundreds of people attended a vigil for 15-year-old Joey Phillips-Clay, also of Nixa.

Phillips-Clay was stabbed in the throat last Thursday at a Nixa apartment complex. Investigators and family members said it happened when Phillips-Clay tried to step in as his half brother was arguing with Padilla.

Phillips-Clay would have started his sophomore year at Nixa High School this week.