Police say former officer cannot purchase K9 unit

Columbia Police Chief Ken Burton says a former Columbia police officer won't be allowed to buy the dog he handled for the department.

The Columbia Daily Tribune reports that the city's risk management department told Burton that liabilities were too great to allow the permanent transfer of the 18-month-old dog, Fano, to his former handler Rob Sanders.

Sanders lost his job with the Columbia Police Department in September.

No officers are available to take on handler duties for the German Shepherd, which Burton said will possibly be sent back to a training academy.

Rob Sanders said his attorney has advised him not to comment.