Heck Tate is the sheriff of Maycomb County. He is an old friend of Atticus Finch--Atticus calls him "Heck," but the sheriff shows Atticus his utmost respect by calling him "Mr. Finch." Scout describes him as having a long nose and being as "tall as Atticus but thinner." He wears a belt full of bullets and carries a rifle, but he apparently does not consider himself a better shot than Atticus, since Heck willingly turns the weapon over to him when it comes time to take out ol' Tim Johnson. Sheriff Tate plays a bigger role in the later chapters, but I won't spoil the story for you by revealing how.