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Essence James, charged with killing her 15-month-old baby, will stand trial

Published On: Mar 11 2014 12:25:20 PM EDT

Mother charged with killing her child

ALLENTOWN, Pa. -

An Allentown woman accused of beating her infant son to death is heading to trial after a judge refused to accept her plea.

Essence James, 35,  is charged with homicide for the death of her son, 15-month-old Cordero James.

Police arrested James last April after the baby died in a home at 718 15th Street.

Officials say she tried to enter a plea Monday but officials said the judge rejected the plea because James would not admit guilt.

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Officials say the baby's father --Michael James -- was arrested for child endangerment after he admitted being high on marijuana while he was supposed to be watching the child.

Essence James' trial date is scheduled for March 24.