ROCKLAND, Maine — The man accused of killing a Friendship woman and dumping her body near a quarry entered a plea of not guilty Thursday morning at Knox County Superior Court.

Arnold Diana, 35, of Rockland is being kept in jail without bail on a charge of intentional or knowing murder stemming from an incident Saturday, Nov. 20, when police said Diana killed his 47-year-old former girlfriend, Katrina Windred.

Police say Diana strangled Windred to death in his Rockland apartment as the woman’s 11-year-old son sat reading comic books in her car.

Later that Saturday, as the boy lay asleep on the floor not far from the bed where he had been told his mother lay sleeping, Diana wrapped his ex-girlfriend’s body in a blanket and dragged it down the back stairs, according to an affidavit filed in court by a Maine State Police detective.

He placed the body in the front seat of a borrowed truck and later dumped it on the side of Thompson Meadow Road, the document states.

When the boy awoke in Diana’s apartment at about 3 a.m. to find his mother gone, Diana told him she had left to visit friends, according to the affidavit. Later that morning, Diana drove the boy to his father’s home and dropped him off, explaining that Windred had not returned to pick her son up.

Three days later, a man walking with his dog on Thompson Meadow Road on the outskirts of the city near old limestone quarries spotted Windred’s body and called police. Police arrested Diana on Nov. 27.

In court Thursday morning, Diana’s attorney, Christopher MacLean, said he was considering filing a motion to take the case out of Knox County Superior Court and relocate to a nearby county. This, he said, would make it easier to find an impartial jury.

Justice Jeffrey Hjelm did not entertain the motion this early in the court process. No date has been set for the trial, which is not expected to start until the fall.