A Pittsburgh-area man serving a life term in a drug-related kidnapping and murder more than a dozen years ago has been granted a new trial in a case that also landed two former college football players behind bars.

U.S. Magistrate Robert Mitchell ruled Thursday that the attorney for 33-year-old Jared Henkel of Mount Lebanon provided ineffective legal advice.

Henkel and 33-year-old Jared Lischner were convicted of second-degree murder in the 2002 slaying of 19-year-old Andrew Jones. Thirty-five-year-old Craig Elias was convicted of first-degree murder.

Lischner earlier won a new trial on the same grounds and was sentenced to 10 to 20 years on a third-degree murder plea.

Authorities said the defendants killed Jones and dumped his body in the Ohio River because they believed he had stolen from a safe. Elias and Lischner were previously members of the Duquesne football team.


The headlines of this story have been corrected to show the killing happened in 2002, not 2012.