Rodney Couch, front, is led away from the Pontotoc County Courthouse Thursday after pleading, along with his son Clinton Couch, not guilty to kidnapping and beating a former business partner. (Photo by Randy Mitchell)

Two men who allegedly kidnapped and beat another man over a business deal gone bad pleaded not guilty in Pontotoc County District Court Thursday.

Rodney Couch, 51, and his son, 28-year-old Clinton Couch, both of Coal County, surrendered to authorities and appeared before Judge Steve Kessinger along with their attorney. The two pleaded not guilty to two counts each of kidnapping, one count each of conspiracy and one count each of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.

The Couch's former business partner, 32-year-old Jason James of Ada, told authorities on Nov. 21, 2010, Rodney and Clinton Couch — along with several other men — kidnapped him and beat him severely when a business arrangement went sour. He was treated for his wounds at a local hospital. For more information see Friday's edition of Ada Evening News.