The Illinois father who is accused of beating and killing his five-year-old son A.J. is pleading not guilty in the case. Andrew Freund Sr. [[ friend ]] appeared in court yesterday to enter a plea. AJ Freund’s mother JoAnn Cunningham accepted a plea deal earlier this month and was sentenced to 35 years in prison for the boy’s beating death last year. Attorneys for AJ’s father are attempting to negotiate a plea deal for him too.