In each of the 36 counties in Oregon, the Sheriff is the chief law enforcement officer. His primary duty is to give full police protection to the unincorporated areas of the county. However, he maintains full police jurisdiction in all municipalities.
His responsibilities cover the entire spectrum of law enforcement — criminal investigation, search and rescue, service of legal process of the courts, the operation of the county jail, and total police services on a 24-hour basis. The Sheriffs Office must provide court security, transport all criminals to and from penal institutions and is also called upon to handle mental patients within their jurisdiction.
The Sheriffs maintain well-trained reserves to aid regular deputies and to assist them in any way possible. As an unpaid service unit, volunteer deputies are required to have law enforcement education.
In many counties, the Oregon Sheriff is directing large numbers of personnel, and managing budgets in excess of several million dollars. The efficient and effective management of the Sheriffs Office demands a highly trained and experienced Sheriff.
The state law sets the qualifications for Sheriff as: Not less than 21 years of age, be certified or eligible for certification by the Department of Public Safety Standards and Training, and have at least four years’ experience in law enforcement or two years post high school education, or any combination of experience and education for at least four years.
All Sheriffs have full police authority in any county in Oregon when requested by another Sheriff In this respect, these men have established great working rapport. The communication between the respective Sheriffs is effective, efficient, and a true service to the people of Oregon.