How to become a Sheriff: 13 steps (with pictures)

How to become a Sheriff: 13 steps (with pictures)
How to become a Sheriff: 13 steps (with pictures)

The Sheriff is responsible for the general maintenance of order, a task which includes the locking up of offenders and the management of federal prisons. In most jurisdictions, he is elected for four years. Prepare to become a Sheriff by passing police school and upholding the law to learn the basics of the trade, such as handling a firearm, handling a crime scene, and making decisions quickly. When you have acquired all the necessary skills, you can finally apply to begin said Sheriff training.


Part 1 of 3: Prerequisites

Become a Sheriff Step 1

Step 1. Be a citizen of United States

If you want to be a Sheriff in the US, you must be a US citizen. If you are in the process of acquiring nationality, you can begin to prepare by gaining experience, but you cannot officially be an officer.

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Step 2. Be of legal age

The age limit differs from country to country, but in most cases you will need to be over 18. Waiting for years can be boring, but Sheriff is an important job and it takes patience to qualify. It is indeed a position of responsibility, which therefore requires a good dose of wisdom.

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Step 3. Live where you want to work

In many states, you must be a resident of the city to which you are applying. If you have just moved in, you will probably have to wait a year to be eligible. Check the law enforcement website to find the exact information.

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Step 4. Be in good physical and mental condition

Since this work imposes a lot of physical and psychological constraints, it is important that you are in a condition to cope with stress. You will have to pass with flying colors the tests that will be imposed on you.

  • Passing the police school will put you in good physical condition. You will learn to run, to do pumpings, to put on handcuffs, to make inquiries, to stop people and to work a long time without taking a break.
  • You will learn stress management and the ability to react quickly while gaining experience in your field. Stress management is also learned by doing, which is why it is important to have experience.
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Step 5. Get your degree

Most districts require at least a higher education degree. If you don't have one, you can also take a General Education Level (GED) test.

Part 2 of 3: Gain Knowledge and Experience

Become a Sheriff Step 2

Step 1. Get your diploma from the police academy

Although some countries offer special courses to become a Sheriff, saving you a passage through the police academy, most districts require that their candidates have completed the police academy. You will learn the essential skills related to the work of Sheriff as well as general knowledge relating to, among other things, the Highway Code or how to question a witness. At the end of the program, you will master the following points:

  • the use of a firearm
  • managing a crime scene
  • crowd management
  • interpellation procedures
  • high speed driving
  • constitutional law
  • questioning of witnesses
Become a Sheriff Step 4

Step 2. Work in policing

When you graduate from police academy, work as an officer to gain experience. Each district has its experience requirements. Some require a minimum of five years while others require only one year.

  • In addition to having worked as a police officer, you may be required to obtain a special aptitude certificate. You will obtain the latter following a battery of tests aimed at evaluating your ability to act as a good officer.
  • When you are faced with the opportunity to exercise leadership roles, take the opportunity to develop your leadership qualities.
  • Any other law enforcement-related job may be considered when you apply for the position of Sheriff. For example, working as a judge may be considered in the same way as a police officer in some states.
Become a Sheriff Step 3

Step 3. Obtain a qualification in law enforcement or justice

Since not all states require a college degree, having a bachelor's degree can already increase your chances of finding a job and boost your credibility. Consider further studies in law enforcement or justice to prepare for your future job.

  • Courses in psychology, criminology, improvement of your written or oral expression will improve your profile.
  • When you study, try to work for the Sheriff as an intern.
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Step 4. Get involved in policing the district where you study

To prepare, it's important that you invest in policing where you study. Learn the ins and outs of local laws, understand the issues of the area where you live, and identify the role the Sheriff plays in it all. The better you understand how your district works, the better you will be.

  • For example, if you live in a district that has serious drinking and driving problems, try to understand how this affects the population and how the Sheriff should act to deal with the problem.
  • As you move forward, be prepared to have to demonstrate that you are familiar with the problems in the region and that you have the authority to protect the people.

Part 3 of 3: Become a Sheriff

Become a Sheriff Step 5

Step 1. Learn about the specific requirements of your district

Each state has its own requirements, so start by doing your research to find exactly what qualifications you need. Here are some typical requirements, in addition to proven experience and the qualifications already mentioned.

  • Take a written exam on your reasoning and writing skills, as well as on specific topics related to the Sheriff's job (search for sample tests and information online).
  • Take an interview during which you will be tested on your communication, problem-solving and reasoning skills, in addition to having to prove your determination.
  • Take a test on your past. You will be disqualified if you are on parole, if you have been convicted, if you have abused addictive substances, if you have a history of debt or if you have committed serious traffic violations.
  • Pass a physical endurance test as well as a test on the handling of weapons.
Become a Sheriff Step 6

Step 2. Complete the necessary formalities

Before the deadline, submit your application to become a Sheriff. You can do this by going to the courthouse and following the procedure described there. Make sure you meet all the requirements before filling out the form.

Become a Sheriff Step 7

Step 3. Start your campaign

Since the Sheriff is elected in some districts, you have to promote yourself to get people to vote for you. Support the fact that you are ready to take on this role. Make it a goal to reach every voter in the district. Running a campaign is not easy, since you are competing with others, but it is the home stretch, so remove the obstacles in front of you one by one to achieve your dream.

  • Set up a campaign committee, instead of doing everything solo. This will help you raise funds, increase your notoriety, distribute flyers, and generally notify people that you are competing to become Sheriffs.
  • Debate on a serious topic affecting the region and let voters know about your point of view. Try to see what sets you apart from other applicants, be it your intellect, your experience or your love of the region and use those strengths.
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Step 4. Get elected

If your campaign is successful, you will be required to take an oath and sign a contract. Prepare to be Sheriff for 4 years, renewable for 4 years.

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