If you want to become one of the 46 sheriffs in South Carolina, you need to be aware of the requirements and steps that will get you there. The South Carolina Sheriffs’ Association was established in 1913 to support and train sheriffs all across the state. Today, it has 46 member counties. It promotes public safety through legal processes, workshops and information exchanges.

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If you are interested in becoming a sheriff in South Carolina, you need to continue reading the following guide.

Requirements to Become a Sheriff in South Carolina

The exact requirements to become a sheriff in South Carolina would be different as per each county’s own principles. However, at a general level, since Sheriff is one of the senior most positions in law enforcement, following are the main requirements you need to know to become a police officer first:

  • Enroll in a Police Academy Training Program: Since it is a law enforcement occupation, you would need proper training to be prepared for the position.
  • Candidate Should Be a US Citizen: If you have applied for citizenship, you will have to wait till the process is complete to be eligible to apply.
  • Candidate Needs to Be 18 Years of Age: Some counties might impose different age cutoffs
    for instance, some require candidates to be at least 21 or 20 years old.
  • Candidate Ought to Have Completed High School: This is a mandatory minimum educational requirement.
  • Candidate Should Be in a Good Mental and Physical Shape: As with all law enforcement occupations, being in good shape is integral.

Steps to Become a Sheriff in South Carolina

Once you have ensured that you satisfy the basic eligibility criteria of your concerned county, you can move to the actual process of application.

Step 1: Get some Law Enforcement Experience

Working as a police officer might be the best way to get ideal field experience. Some jurisdictions might also allow working as a judge to be substituted for police work.

Step 2: Invest in a Higher Education Degree

Though this step is not a requirement, it is highly recommended that you invest some time and effort in getting a higher educational qualification.

Step 3: Meet the County’s Requirements for Sheriff

Your county will have certain tests for you to clear before becoming eligible to apply. Make sure you are aware of these and clear them well in time.

Step 4: Submit your Paperwork at the Courthouse

After meeting all the county-specific requirements, you would need to submit your application to the county courthouse.

Step 5: Begin the Campaign

Put together a qualified team to help you campaign and carry out various fundraising activities.

Step 6: Get Elected and Assume Office

If your campaigning is fruitful and you manage to get the most votes, you will become the sheriff of your county.

Step 7: Candidate Should Be a Resident of the County They Intend to Contest Elections:

In several states require that the applicants be residents of the concerned state, for at least one year before applying.

How Much Does a Sheriff Make in South Carolina?

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the annual mean income for First-Line Supervisors of Police and Detectives was $61,160 in South Carolina.