I am so thankful for all the support, encouragement and trust the people of Cheshire County has placed on me. Being your Sheriff is an honor and a commitment that I am ready to take on.

I will maintain this website as a source of information and keep you posted of our accomplishments, goals, news, mission of the Sheriff's Office and events. I will also use this website to seek your input and support on issues that may come around and  have an impact on the services the Sheriff's Office provide.

As I go around talking to friends and family these are some of the common questions I get:

Who is Sheriff Elect Rivera?

I was born in New York and raised in Puerto Rico.  In 1984 I joined the United States Coast Guard (USCG) and served for 5 years.  After attending Basic Training in Cape May, NJ my first assignment was to the USCG Cutter Apalachee.  A Coast Guard Icebreaker Tug Boat stationed in South Portland, ME where I spent 2 years.  After attending advance training in 1986, I finished my USCG career at Coast Guard Station Castle Hill in Newport, RI.  My primary duty was coxswain (pilot) of Coast Guard's rescue and heavy weather boats.  In 1989 I moved to Keene, NH and married my beautiful wife, Jen. After moving to Keene, I worked for the Cheshire County House of Corrections, Winchester Police Department and the Keene Police Department.  Retiring from the Keene Police Department as a Lieutenant in 2012.  While in Keene I also served in the United States Army Reserve for 7 years as a Military Police Officer and an Army Instructor.

Is it a Sheriff's Department or Sheriff's Office?

Black's Law Dictionary defines the terms as follows:

DEPARTMENT: "One of the major divisions of the executive branch of the government... generally, a branch or division of governmental administration."

OFFICE: "A right, and correspondent duty, to exercise public trust as an office. A public charge of employment... the most frequent occasions to use the word arise with reference to a duty and power conferred on an individual by the government, and when this is the connection, public office is a usual and more discriminating expression... in the constitutional sense, the term implies an authority to exercise some portion of the sovereign power either in making, executing, or administering the laws."

The Office of Sheriff is not simply another "department" of county government. The internal operation of an Office of Sheriff is the sole responsibility of the elected Sheriff. County department heads are subordinates to a county governing body, because a "department" is truly only a division of county government.  The Office of Sheriff is a statutory/constitutional office having exclusive powers and authority under state law and/or state constitution.  These inherent powers are not subject to the dictates of a local governing body.

The use of the term "Department" implies being a subordinate unit of government (i.e. subordinate to local government - "delegated" authority from county government to a Department).  The use of the term "Office" implies powers and independent sovereignty.

Provided by www.sheriffs.org - National Sheriff's Association

What does a Sheriff do?

The duties and power of the Sheriff's Office are covered under New Hampshire Revised Statutes Chapter 104: Sheriffs and Constables, and especially detailed in RSA 104:5 & 104.6.

104:5 Duties -
I- The sheriff and the sheriff's deputies shall serve and execute all writs and other precepts directed to the sheriff's department and issued from lawful authority. 
II -The sheriff and the sheriff's deputies and bailiffs shall perform the duties of crier of the court. 
III - The sheriff's bailiffs shall provide adequate security in all state courts, except the supreme court. 
IV - The sheriff's bailiffs shall comply with such background investigation checks, physical and mental standards, and training appropriate to their duties as the police standards and training council may require. The council shall consult with the New Hampshire Sheriffs Association and the administrative office of the courts prior to adopting these standards.

104:6 Powers -
I - Sheriffs and their deputies shall have throughout the state the same power and authority to serve criminal or civil processes, investigate crimes and to pursue and apprehend criminals that they have in their respective counties. 
II - Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, sheriffs and their deputies shall have authority to enforce civil orders issued by any court.

I will post my responses to these questions, so please check back.

Like us on facebook



Eli Rivera, Sheriff

Cheshire County Sheriff's Office
Sheriff Eli Rivera
12 Court St
Keene NH 03431