CHARLESTON, W.Va. — A man convicted of killing a fast-food restaurant manager nearly 30 years ago will get a new trial after a judge ruled that a discredited former state police forensic serologist tainted his trial.

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports ( Cabell County Circuit Judge Alfred Ferguson overturned Phillip Ward’s murder conviction Thursday in Carol Carter’s death, granting Ward a new trial.

Ward was found guilty of killing Carter in 1987 and sentenced to life in prison.

Then-serologist Fred Zain testified at Ward’s trial. The state Supreme Court later discredited his work after finding he gave false testimony for more than 10 years about DNA evidence found at crime scenes.

Ward’s lawyer, Connor Robertson had asked Ferguson to throw out Ward’s conviction last year because of Zain’s role in the case.

Information from: The Charleston Gazette-Mail,

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