Office of the Sheriff
Article VII, Section 2 of the North Carolina Constitution states: "In each county a Sheriff shall be elected by the qualified voters thereof at the same time and places as the members of the General Assembly are elected and shall hold his office for a period of four years, subject to removal for cause as provided by law." The office of the Sheriff is an ancient one that has evolved over the years. The Office of the Sheriff exists in every state of the United States except Alaska and the Sheriff is elected by the voters in every state except Rhode Island, where the Sheriff is appointed by the Governor. In Hawaii, the Sheriff serves the entire state. Today, the North Carolina Sheriff provides general law enforcement and investigative services, maintains the county jail, serves and executes papers from the state courts, maintains the sex offender registry within the county, issues permits to purchase handguns, and issues permits to carry concealed handguns.