SASKATOON -- A former Prince Albert RCMP officer charged with first degree murder pleaded not guilty on Wednesday.

Former RCMP Cst. Bernie Herman, 53, is charged in the death of 26-year-old Braden Herman.

Both the accused and the victim are from the La Loche area. They had known each other for years but were not related.

The body of Braden Herman was found in a wooded area near Little Red River Park northeast of Prince Albert on May 11.

Police have said the body appeared to have been shot. Investigators said Bernie Herman left work in full uniform with his duty belt and was likely in full uniform at the time of the death.

Bernie Herman is alleged to have phoned a co-worker and made "disturbing comments" that he had killed someone.

Bernie Herman has resigned from the RCMP after 32 years of service.

The preliminary hearing is set for December 13-17 in Prince Albert Provincial Court.