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Ohio inmate admits to Fort Wayne teen's 1998 slaying

Thursday, January 17, 2013 - 8:19 am

A man serving prison time in Ohio admitted Wednesday to killing a Fort Wayne teenager nearly 15 years ago.

Bernard McClaney, 36, pleaded guilty to a single count of murder in the April 1, 1998, shooting death of then-19-year-old Artie Rittenhouse III, according to Allen Superior Court records.

At the time, Rittenhouse's mother told police she found her son sitting on a couch with a bullet wound to his head in their East Hamilton Avenue home, according to court documents.

Last year, new DNA evidence and a series of interviews led detectives to McClaney, who is serving time in a Toledo prison on previous convictions of aggravated robbery and voluntary manslaughter. McClaney told police in August that he killed Rittenhouse after going to his home to trade for marijuana, documents said.

Under Indiana law, the minimum sentence for murder is 45 years in prison. McClaney is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 8. According to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction, he is scheduled to serve until 2016 for his previous convictions.