Athens County Residents React to Kelly Verdicts

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People in Athens County are reacting to the 18 guilty verdicts against Pat Kelly.

Athens County resident Roger Edwards said he did not know much about what was said in the verdicts, but he said he feels sorry for Kelly.

“I think it was a lot of politics involved,” said Edwards. “I know the Kelly family. He comes from a respected family and I hope he can do something on his appeals”

The Plains resident Linda Wolford said she thought Kelly was a good sheriff.

“I understand that he did wrong, but I think that he’s been a good sheriff and [the jury] could have been a little easier on him,” Wolford said.

Many others were supportive of Kelly and agreed that the jury was too tough in Kelly’s verdicts.

Words of sympathy are also being shared on Kelly’s Facebook page.

Newly appointed Sheriff Rodney Smith said he is glad the trial has reached an end.

“We’re glad it’s over. We’re ready to move forward to this year,” Smith said.

Smith said his main priority as sheriff is the safety and wellbeing of the people in Athens County.

“We’re going to implement some more policies and more standards that we have set for the Sheriff’s office.”

A jury found former Athens County Sheriff Pat Kelly guilty of 18 of 25 charges.

Kelly was not found guilty of tampering with evidence and records.

Kelly is scheduled to be sentenced on March 20.