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Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff

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What is a Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff?

Position Description Enforce law and order in rural or unincorporated districts or serve legal processes of courts. May patrol courthouse, guard court or grand jury, or escort defendants.

A Day in the Life of a Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff

  • Execute arrest warrants, locating and taking persons into custody.
  • Locate and confiscate real or personal property, as directed by court order.
  • Patrol and guard courthouses, grand jury rooms, or assigned areas to provide security, enforce laws, maintain order, and arrest violators.
  • Record daily activities and submit logs and other related reports and paperwork to appropriate authorities.
  • Manage jail operations and tend to jail inmates.
  • Notify patrol units to take violators into custody or to provide needed assistance or medical aid.

What Skills Do You Need to Work as a Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff?

Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Negotiation: Bringing others together and trying to reconcile differences.

  • Sheriff’s Officer
  • Civil Process Server
  • Deputy Sheriff Generalist
  • Corporal-Road Deputy with Sheriff Department
  • Sheriffs Officer

Is There Going to be Demand for Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs?

There were about 684,200 jobs for Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff in 2016 (in the United States). New jobs are being produced at a rate of 7% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 47,700 new jobs for Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 49,500 job openings in this field each year.


The states with the most job growth for Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff are Utah, Texas, and Nevada. Watch out if you plan on working in New Jersey, Maryland, or Alaska. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Salary for a Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff

The salary for Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs ranges between about $35,750 and $101,620 a year.


Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs who work in California, New Jersey, or Alaska, make the highest salaries.

How much do Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs make in each U.S. state?

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $45,930
Alaska $88,030
Arizona $64,640
Arkansas $39,560
California $101,380
Colorado $72,950
Connecticut $71,920
Delaware $70,000
District of Columbia $74,940
Florida $59,610
Georgia $42,990
Hawaii $74,040
Idaho $53,880
Illinois $75,720
Indiana $55,310
Iowa $58,340
Kansas $48,350
Kentucky $45,600
Louisiana $41,550
Maine $49,840
Maryland $68,230
Massachusetts $69,870
Michigan $56,270
Minnesota $69,060
Mississippi $35,550
Missouri $48,920
Montana $56,230
Nebraska $57,530
Nevada $70,450
New Hampshire $58,120
New Jersey $83,720
New Mexico $51,250
New York $74,860
North Carolina $48,420
North Dakota $57,190
Ohio $61,040
Oklahoma $46,120
Oregon $70,360
Pennsylvania $66,600
Rhode Island $60,890
South Carolina $42,280
South Dakota $48,550
Tennessee $44,600
Texas $61,870
Utah $53,890
Vermont $52,940
Virginia $56,710
Washington $77,670
West Virginia $43,590
Wisconsin $62,040
Wyoming $55,050

Tools & Technologies Used by Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Outlook
  • Web browser software
  • Microsoft Access
  • Email software
  • Word processing software
  • Microsoft Windows
  • Microsoft Visio
  • Database software
  • ESRI ArcView
  • Corel WordPerfect Office Suite
  • IBM Lotus 1-2-3
  • National Crime Information Center NCIC database
  • Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System IAFIS
  • Law enforcement information databases
  • National Integrated Ballistics Information Network NIBIN
  • Computer aided dispatch software

How do I Become a Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff?

Are there Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs education requirements?


What work experience do I need to become a Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff?


Where Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs Work


Sheriffs and Deputy Sheriffs work in the following industries:


You May Also Be Interested In…

Those interested in being a Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff may also be interested in:

Are you already one of the many Sheriff or Deputy Sheriff in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:


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