DISCLAIMER: The information herein is provided by the respective agency and is only as accurate and as up-to-date as the agency representative(s) update this information. PST is not responsible for the veracity of this data as it is provided directly from the agency. It is ultimately the applicant's responsibility to verify any information about the agency with the agency.

Whatcom County Sheriff's Office

  • Contact Information

    Whatcom County Sheriff's Office
    311 Grand Avenue, Suite 107
    Bellingham, Washington 98225
    Phone: (360) 778-5300
    Department Website

Agency Added: 01/31/2013 | Last updated: 05/10/2018

Community Information

Whatcom County is nestled along the Canadian border, beautifully positioned between the San Juan Islands and the Cascade mountain range, this safe, scenic community is nationally recognized for its quality of life and diverse recreational opportunities. Visit www.bellingham.com for more information about our community.

Department Information

The Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office has a staff of 190 employees under the leadership of Sheriff, Bill Elfo.   The Sheriff’s Office is comprised of three bureaus: Law Enforcement and Investigations, Corrections, and Civil and Support Services.  In addition the Division of Emergency Management serves to enhance the safety of citizens in the event of anatural or man-made disaster.

Area Information

  • Population (2011 Estimated): 202,100
  • County: Whatcom

Agency Requirements:

Category Requirement Required at time of..
Test Hire
Minimum Age 21   X
US Citizen Yes X  
High School Grad/ GED Yes X  
Driver's License Required Yes. Possession of valid driver's license at time of hire and throughout employment.   X
Felony Conviction(s) as an Adult None X  
Felony Conviction(s) as a Juvenile Will be carefully reviewed on a case by case basis    
Ability to Read & Speak the English Language Yes X  
Vision Requirements Correctable to 20/20 X  
College Requirement None. College-level coursework in corrections, law enforcement, law and justice, police science or social services is desired.    
Other Must possess good moral character.

Must possess temperate and industrious habits.

Candidates must successfully pass the Physical Fitness and Abilities Test for this agency.

This agency allows out of state testing.

Agency Disqualifiers:


Category Disqualifier
PotentialConviction for driving while intoxicated or related charges, reckless driving, hit and run, criminal negligent driving or driving while license suspended or revoked within the past 5 years. Any DUI conviction ever, will require the applicant, due to the admissibility requirement to Canada, to obtain a "Certificate of Rehabilitation" from the Canadian Government. A driving history indicating a repetitive disregard for traffic laws, irresponsibility in meeting traffic court obligations, the failure to maintain required insurance or the involvement in an inordinate number of motor vehicle accidents. The term conviction shall include any disposition adverse to the applicant, except a decision not to prosecute, a dismissal, or an acquittal. A dismissal entered after a period of probation, suspension, or deferral of sentence is considered a disposition adverse to the applicant.
Drug Usage
AutomaticNo recent possession or use (within past year) of any illegal or non-prescribed drugs, to include marijuana
AutomaticNo possession of non-prescribed amphetamine stimulants (excluding methamphetamines) but including Ritalin within the past 5 years.
AutomaticNo possession or use of methamphetamines such as speed, crank, crystal, or ice for the past 15 years.
AutomaticNo possession or use of hallucinogenic drugs (LSD, PCP, Ecstasy/MDMA, designer drugs, hallucinogenic mushrooms, etc.) in the past 10 years or more than 5 times during lifetime
AutomaticNo possession or use of non-prescribed opiates (heroin, morphine, methadone, etc.) for the last 10 years or more than 5 times in a lifetime.
AutomaticNo possession or use of anabolic steroids with the past 5 years or more than 10 times in a lifetime.
AutomaticNo possession or use of cocaine including "crack" cocaine in the past 10 years or more than 5 times in a lifetime.
AutomaticNo non-prescribed/unlawful possession or use of any controlled substance subsequent to submitting an application for employment with any criminal justice or law enforcement agency within the past 15 years.
AutomaticNo non-prescribed possession or use of any controlled substance during the time of, or subsequent to, any employment with any criminal justice or law enforcement agency.
AutomaticNo actual possession involving being under the influence of controlled substances while working in any safety or security sensitive position.
AutomaticNo illegal manufacture or deriving income through the possession, sale or importation of controlled substances during lifetime.
Criminal Activity
AutomaticAny involvement in an organization as a participant, officer or employee of any organization, association or group which advocates the overthrow of our government by unlawful means, advocates or approves committing acts of force or violence to deny others their legal rights or wants to change our form of government by unconstitutional means.
PotentialThe applicant's association of persons having notoriety for involvement in criminal activity, unless satisfactorily explained.
PotentialThe commission of any act evidencing unfairness, untruthfulness, cheating, dishonesty or disrespect for the rights of others. The commission of acts evidencing recklessness or irresponsibility.
AutomaticConviction for any felony offense or for any misdemeanor or gross misdemeanor offense involving violence, theft, moral turpitude, sex crimes, altering documents, false statements, computer trespass, controlled substances or crimes evidencing disrespect for the rights of others. The term conviction shall include any disposition adverse to the applicant, except a decision not to prosecute, a dismissal, or an acquittal. A dismissal entered after a period of probation, suspension, or deferral of sentence is considered a disposition adverse to the applicant.
PotentialDemonstrate poor performance with current or prior employers that relate to a failure to follow reasonable workplace rules or maintain good work habits or unexplained instability in employment.
PotentialGross failure to make arrangement for the payment of debt or incurring debt the applicant knows or should know that he or she will be unable to repay shall be grounds for removal of the applicant unless a satisfactory explanation is provided.
PotentialIf having served in the Armed Forces of the United States, receipt of no less than a fully honorable discharge.

Current Hiring Status

Whatcom County's Civil Service Commission continuously maintains eligibility lists of entry-level, lateral entry and certified entry deputy sheriff.  Please check our employment web page for information on our hiring process.

We establish new eligibility lists approximately every 3 months. As of February 7, 2018, we have 3 openings for Deputy Sheriff.

We anticipate holding 2018 Entry Level Deputy Sheriff oral boards on the following dates:

March 1 & 2, 2018
June 7, 2018
September 27, 2018
December 6, 2018

For more information about the Whatcom County Sheriff's Office and the Deputy Sheriff position, please review our Recruitment Brochure.

Prospective candidates are encouraged to review our list of Automatic Disqualifiers before applying. 

Salary Information

Entry-level Deputy Sheriffs start at $31.45 per hour and receive annual step increases for the first five years.  Deputies earn longevity increases every three years beginning in their sixth year through their twenty-fourth year.

Wages are scheduled to increase 2.5% in July, 2018, increasing the starting wage to $32.24 per hour.

Benefit Information

Whatcom County offers a comprehensive benefits package with medical, dental and vision coverage for employees, spouses and eligible dependents.  Our benefits package also includes attractive paid leave provisions. Employees participate in the Washington State Retirement System and may also enroll in an optional deferred compensation program. 

Detailed benefit information is available on our website.