Man serving life sentence in 1987 Huntington murder will not get new trial

The West Virginia Supreme Court rules Thursday that Phillip Ward will not get a new trial in the 1987 murder of Carol Carter. (West Virginia Regional Jail)

A man who has spent the last three decades in prison for a murder in Cabell County will not get a new trial.

In October 2016, prosecutors appealed a decision to grant a new trial to Phillip A. Ward, who is accused of killing Carol Carter in Huntington in 1987.

The notice sought to reverse Cabell Circuit Judge Alfred Ferguson's order and reinstate Ward's first-degree murder conviction and sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Prosecutors said the judge abused his discretion when he granted the new trial, based on testimony from former West Virginia State Police serologist Fred Zain. Prosecutors said Zain's testimony was "completely litigated."

On Thursday, the state Supreme Court ruled Ward would not get a new trial.

The AP contributed to this report.

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