Growing up watching detective serials and movies, everyone wants to become a detective. After knowing the character of Sherlock Holmes, we assume to be like him. But this dream seems to be forgotten and we will work to more realistic goals. Since crime rate is increasing these days, more detectives are needed in order to solve them. This is the reason why some police officers are trying to be like Sherlock Holmes. For those of you who still haven’t given up on your detective dreams, here is some information on the exciting career of being a detective.
Table Of Contents
- Average Detective Salary
- Detective Career Outlook
- How To Become A Detective
- Detective Job Description
How Much a Detective Earns
The base salary of a detective first depends on his or her employer. Usually, a state employed investigator has higher earnings compared to a private one. This is mostly due to steady work that they receive compared to the intermittent work of a private detective.The reason behind this is they always have work to do compared to a private detective. A state employed detective earns a national average of $76,000. The average salary for a private detective is around $45,000 only. The factors that affect a PI’s salary will be discussed later. For now, let us look at the factors that affect the salary of state employed investigators.
Size of population
Like police officers, the population of a city decides the income of a detective. If the city is more populated, then the number of cases that need to be handled also rises. Therefore, the salary increases as well. One of the major factors in deciding the salary of an investigator is the crime rate. For example, the average salary for someone in the LA police department ranges from $44,000 to $88,000. In contrast, for someone in Miami Police department, the average salary tends to be around $86,000 to $107,000.
Location of job
The location is closely related to the population of the place and the crime rate. However, cost of living is another factor to consider. A detective will be paid higher if the cost of living in that certain location is higher. This logic agrees with the case of private investigators too. District of Columbia, Alaska, and New Jersey all pay 6-figure salaries with District of Columbia paying as much as $116,000.
One can have a police job if he or she has a high school degree except at the federal level. This rules do not apply in all states but higher education certificates are not required in most states. However, some states and departments have started to realize the importance of higher education and thus are paying officers and detectives a percentage higher above the base pay if they have a degree after high school. This can be an associate, bachelor or a master’s degree. You will be paid more depending on your degree.
You will be paid as an investigator if you will be working in the field for a long period of time. Usually, people see an increase of up to $15,000 with 20 years of experience if they do not get promoted. However, with promotions, if you reach the post of Police Chief, you can earn about $180,000 annually.
Arvada Private Investigators
A private investigator’s salary depends on the number of cases he or she takes and solves. As mentioned before, the location can affect the price along with the many other factors such as the amount of discretion needed, the amount of danger involved, extra equipment required and many other things. Clients usually present their problem to the investigator and then it is up to them to quote a price for the job.
As you can see, the income of a state-employed detective is steady and can be increased by various means. On the hand, the salary of a private investigator is quite unpredictable and can only be increased by fame (or rather being more discrete). Based on these financial facts, you will be able to decide the path to go.
Arvada Detective Career Outlook
First thing first, we will be talking about career growth in this field. There were about 106,000 public detectives or criminal investigators on record in 2015. On the other hand, there were only about 30,000 private investigators holding a job at the same time. There is a predicted growth of 5% in the industry of private detectives. This goes to show that by 2025, 1,500 new jobs will be opened. This growth rate is following the average growth rate of 5% across all other sectors. On the other hand, for public investigators, this figure is at 4%. This means there is going to be around 4,000 more jobs as a criminal investigator by 2025. This too is an average rate of growth.
The steady increase in employment is mainly due to the increase in population. Because of the increase in population, more people need to be protected and more criminals need to be caught. However, with stricter laws and more advanced technology being use, the crime rate isn’t increasing that significantly. Thus, both the phenomena almost balance each other out leading to an average growth in both these careers.
Geographically speaking, Texas, California and New York employ the highest number of Criminal / Law Enforcement Investigators. Western states and Texas show more employment here than the eastern ones. Private detectives are prominent in California, Texas and Florida with the southern states tending to employ more compared to the northern ones.
Let’s see what are the industries that hire these professionals most. As clear as day, The Local, State government and the Federal branch employ the most number of criminal investigators. On the other hand, private detectives are usually hired by Security Services, Consulting services and occasionally by the local government for consultation on a few cases.
Criminal investigators get higher payments than the private ones. The annual average salary of criminal investigators is $80,000 while Private investigators get $52,000. When you combine the aspects of geography and finance, you see that District of Columbia, Alaska, and New Jersey paid the most (6 figure salaries) for Public investigators. Private detectives receive higher payment in Alabama, Nebraska, and New Jersey.
Compared with the different industries, private industries where they employ most do not pay the highest. Private detectives are paid most in Electromedical, Navigational, Power generation, Metal Product forming and other such industries because of the most sensitive information that needs to be protected. Moving on to Public Investigators, federal agencies, postal services, and educational institutes pay the most.
Qualifications to Become a Arvada Detective
Keep in mind that there are two kinds of detectives. General public can hire some private investigators to investigate certain things. Some of them are employed by the government and get this post after their promotion as a police officer. Here we shall explore both the avenues.
Finish your High School Studies
A detective is known for his deduction skills, and it is due to such that he is promoted to such position. This only means that you will need to complete your high school studies and become a police officer before you can become a detective. A high school degree is likewise necessary if you want to be a private investigator.
Get your Bachelor’s Degree
A bachelor’s degree isn’t really necessary in most cases when becoming a police officer. However, some police officers prefer to have one as a means of employment after they retire. However, if you aspire to be a detective or land a job on federal level, you will need a bachelor’s degree.
A bachelor’s degree in either criminal justice or law will be required in most institutions to become a detective. If you have an associate’s degree, you will need at least 5000 hours. But for someone with a bachelor’s degree, the required training is only 4000 hours.
Get the right amount of experience
You need to experience working as an investigator first before you can become a professional detective. You can find several ways to do so. Getting employed by the government is basically the most common method. Landing work as a law enforcement investigator, arson investigator, or criminal investigator will count as being a person with experience. Other than these, you can also choose to Public defender’s office investigator or a licensed repossessor.
Depending on the state you are applying in, the requirements of experience change. A state might require at least 3 years of experience, but in some it could be as long as 5 years.
Acquire a license for your guns
If an investigator doesn’t have a firearms permit, he won’t be allowed to carry his firearm. Some firearms will need you to undertake a full training course in order to get your permit. Hence, to get a permit for your firearm when working as an investigator, you will need to complete the full training course.
Obtain Colorado licensure
Once you have fulfilled the requirements, you will need to take a state licensing examination. This test usually contains some multiple choice questions about state laws and some procedures that often need to be carried out. The test is only available for those who want to be private detectives. After passing this test, you are officially a private investigator with a license.
Being a detective is dangerous, hence it is a good idea to get your insurance. Basically, this is a medical insurance worth $10,000. However, it is important to also get a higher amount if you carry a firearm since you need to protect yourself from greater dangers and insure the gun itself.
Complete all these steps and then voila! You can now start living the detective life you always wanted. But be careful – as mentioned before, this can be a dangerous line of work. If that doesn’t scare you away, then you should fulfill all the requirements as soon as possible.
Responsibilities of Being a Detective in Arvada
Crime Scene Investigation
One main role of a detective is to take a look at a crime scene and make certain deductions. The detectives find and bag evidence at the scene of the crime. They are supposed to take anything into custody that may look suspicious and may be used for clues or in the court later. To help them deduce a lot of things more quickly and easily, the forensic department will sometimes offer them assistance. To collect more clues and evidence, detectives will need to go door to door and ask any possible eye witnesses.
Doing research regarding previous cases is regarded as an important aspect of a detective’s job. This is so that they can have an insight regarding criminal patterns and behaviors. This involves looking into previous case records to allow them to have an insight regarding the behavior of the criminal. In cases of serial killers or ‘copycats’, research helps a lot. This also helps detectives take down drug cartels by allowing them to identify any tactics being used. Other general research can help them narrow down a suspect better or deduce the crime scene in a more efficient way.
Accurately guessing the culprit
A detective’s main objective is to take the one at fault to justice. However, they will need to come up with a list of suspects first. In some cases, it could include over a hundred people, but there are also cases where there is none. They are able to come up with such list by piecing evidences, statements from eye witnesses, results from research, and a bit of forensics altogether. By means of getting statements from suspects, detectives are able to narrow down their list. With a narrowed down list, they will then have the suspects admit to their crimes.
Testifying In Court
One of the final jobs of a detective on a case is to ensure that justice is served. The court will sometimes summon the detective to the court to aid with the process. They either narrate a possible scenario of how the crime was committed, describe how the evidence incriminates the suspect or provide their expert views on certain topics. Sometimes, the detectives are also required to escort the culprit to jail.
Arvada Private Detectives
All the above duties were that of a public detective or a law enforcement detective. Keep in mind that the job of a private detective isn’t as easy as it seems. They are supposed to carry out their client’s wishes to the best of their abilities as far as reconnaissance is concerned. But there are limits which they shouldn’t go beyond when carrying out their duties. A private detective is usually hired to perform background checks, keep a check on the actions of certain people, track finances, collect evidence against someone or work of similar nature. They should never act in a way that they can be easily recognized as a detective in public. Detectives are also prohibited from arresting an individual.
Basically, you can see that the television has been portraying detectives properly for the most part. However, the roles and responsibilities that detectives carry aren’t as easy as they seem. They are never displayed on portrayed on the media or anywhere else. Detectives should make sure to find any clue they could get since a lot of people’s lives lie on them. If you think being a detective is the right job for you, then you should do research about it now!