Nelsonville sells police K-9 to Meigs County Sheriff’s Office

NELSONVILLE, Ohio — Two more members of Nelsonville law enforcement are headed to Meigs County. 

Officer Troy Smith will become a deputy sheriff at the Meigs County Sheriff’s Office, according to a letter from Meigs County Sheriff Scott Fitch — formerly chief of Nelsonville police — that Dunfee read at a special meeting Tuesday evening. 

According to Nelsonville City Auditor Taylor Sappington, Smith’s last day, per his resignation letter, will be Feb. 27. 


Joining Smith in the move is the city’s sole police K-9, which council agreed to sell to Meigs County for $8,000 during Tuesday’s meeting.

“One of the reasons behind this is, Attila has been retrained from his original trainer to the second trainer, which is [Officer Troy Smith],” Council President Tony Dunfee said Tuesday. “… Attila has a good bond with Officer Smith. I don’t feel that it’s fair to take that dog away.”

The city was “contacted a while back by the Meigs County Sheriff’s Office with their attempt to purchase the dog,” Dunfee said. “During negotiations with the chief, Tolliver, they have come up with a number and the number is $8,000 … It is basically — Attila is going to Meigs County and we are getting a new dog.”

The city obtained Attila, a German Shepherd, through a “community purchase” in 2020, Dunfee said. 

“They went out and raised funds in the community,” Dunfee said. “A few businesses chipped in and raised the money … there were several private donations and that’s how they originally purchased the dog.” Attila’s original handler was former NPD Officer Chris Jones. 

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Sappington said in an email that Attila’s original purchase price was $7,200 (Sappington said it is unclear if training costs were included in that figure; the Independent requested clarification from his office and has not yet heard back). The city will retain its equipment purchased for Attila, Dunfee said.

According to Sappington, the city’s K-9 fund has a balance of $10,072.11 from “two primary funding mechanisms”: community donations and “the opioid settlement money set aside for drug fighting efforts.”

Nelsonville’s new police K-9, when it arrives, will be trained for finding drugs. “That is the purpose of the dog and in our community,” Dunfee said. Council member Dan Sherman added that the dog may also be trained in “searching for people.” 

Nelsonville City Council meets every other Monday of each month. Its next regular meeting will be Monday, Feb. 27, at 7 p.m. in Nelsonville City Council Chambers, 211 Lake Hope Drive. Meetings are also livestreamed on YouTube. Find more at

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