Becoming a detective is a dream for those who grow up watching detective and serial movies. The thrill of deducing never really leaves us especially after getting to know the character of Sherlock Holmes. But this dream seems to be forgotten and we will work to more realistic goals. In recent years, due to the increased rate of crime, there is a greater need for detectives to solve them. This is where some police officers step up and exhibit the Sherlock Holmes in them. You will find some information about being a detective if you still want to become one.
Table Of Contents
- Average Detective Salary
- Detective Career Outlook
- How To Become A Detective
- Detective Job Description
Salary of a Detective
The base salary of a detective first depends on his or her employer. An investigator who is employed by the state earns more than a private one in most cases. This is because a private detective has intermittent work while the state employed has a steady work. A state employed detective earns a national average of $76,000. Whereas the average salary for a private detective can be around $45,000. We shall discuss factors affecting a PI’s salary later. For now, let us look at the factors that affect the salary of state employed investigators.
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. Thus, the increase in salary. Similarly, crime rate also plays a major factor in deciding the salary of an investigator. For example, the average salary for someone in the LA police department ranges from $44,000 to $88,000. Compared to someone in Miami Police department, the average salary ranges from $86,000 to $107,000.
Location of job
Crime rate and population of the place are closely related to the location. But there is another factor, which is the cost of living. Higher the cost of living in a certain location, higher the detective is paid. This logic agrees with the case of private investigators too. A pay of $116,00 is usually received by employees in District of Columbia, Alaska and New Jersey.
Level of education attained
For any police job (except at the federal level), a high school degree is sufficient. States have different rules but a higher education certificate is not necessary in some states. However, officers and detectives are paid more if they have a degree after high school as there are states and departments who consider higher education important. 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. An increase of up to $20,000 will be given to those who work in the field for 20 years if they don’t get a promotion. You can earn about $180,000 annually if you reach the post of Police Chief as a promotion.
Houlton Private Investigators
The salary of a private investigator depends on the how many cases he or she takes and solves them. The factors that affect the salary as mentioned above include the location, amount of discretion needed, amount of danger involved, required extra equipment and other many things. The investigator will quote the job price after the clients presented their problem.
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.
Houlton Detective’s Career Path
First, let’s talk about the growth in the fields. In 2015, the recorded public detectives or criminals investigators are about 106,000. There were about 30,000 private investigators who do the same job on record. In this industry, the predicted growth of private detectives is about 15%. Meaning to say, in 2025 the new jobs open will reach 1,500. Such growth rate follows the 5% average growth rate in all other sectors. On the other hand, for public investigators, this figure is at 4%. This goes to show that 4,000 more jobs as a criminal investigator is expected in 2025. This too is an average rate of growth.
The employment increases steadily because the population increases. Protection should be done to a lot of people and more criminals should be caught as the population increases. Crime rate is not increasing significantly due to stricter laws and more advanced technology being used. Thus, both the phenomena almost balance each other out leading to an average growth in both these careers.
In terms of location, Texas, California and New York have the highest number of Criminal/Law Enforcement Investigators. There are more employments in Western states and Texas compared to the eastern part. Private detectives are prominent in California, Texas and Florida with the southern states tending to employ more compared to the northern ones.
Let’s move on to the industries that hire most of these two professionals. The Local, State government and the Federal branch are employing a lot of criminal investigators. Whereas private detectives are being hired by Security Services, Consulting services and the local government for consultation purposes on a few cases.
Financially speaking, criminal investigators do get paid more than private ones. The annual average salary of criminal investigators is $80,000 while Private investigators get $52,000. Public investigators are paid most in District of Columbia, Alaska, and New Jersey in the aspects of geography and finance. 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. Federal agencies, postal services, and educational institutes are paying public investigators most.
How To Become A Houlton Detective
Detectives come in two kinds. Some of them are private investigators who can be hired by the general public to investigate on certain things. Some of them are employed by the government and get this post after their promotion as a police officer. We are going to explore here the different avenues.
Finish your High School Studies
Due to excellent deduction skills, a deductive is able to take a leap from a police officer to a detective 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. Becoming a private investigator would mean getting a high school degree.
Earn a Bachelor’s degree
Usually, you don’t require a bachelor’s degree to get into the police academy. 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.
In most institutions, you will need a bachelor’s degree in psychology, law, or criminal justice to be able to land a job as a detective. Anyone with an associate’s degree is given training up to 5000 hours. But for someone with a bachelor’s degree, the required training is only 4000 hours.
To become a professional detective (not employed by the state), you need to have some professional experience as an investigator. You can find several ways to do so. Getting employed by the government is basically the most common method. If you have any experience as an arson investigator, criminal investigator or a law enforcement investigator, you are qualified as a person with experience. Working as an office investigator or as a licensed repossessor will count as well.
The experience required might vary from one state to another. Some states require you to have 3 years of experience while others require 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 require a full training course after which they are issued with the permits. Therefore if you want to own a firearm while working as an investigator, completing the training course is necessary to get your own permit.
Complete a Maine licensure exam
After completing all the education and experience requirements, you are required to undergo a state licensing test. During the exam, you will need to answer questions in multiple choice, usually regarding about state laws and several other procedures. This examination is only for aspiring private detectives. If you managed to pass, you will become a licensed private investigator.
Due to the dangerous nature of the work, you should make sure to get an insurance. This is generally medical insurance of about $10,000. However, getting an even higher amount when you bring a firearm is necessary since you need to have some protection with you.
Simply follow through all steps and you’ll have nothing to worry about. You can now start living the detective life you always wanted. Keep in mind however that there are dangers associated with this line of work. If you are still up for it, find out all the education requirements in detail and get started on them right away!
Responsibilities of Being a Detective in Houlton
Crime Scene Investigation
It will be a detective’s duty to carefully assess a crime scene and come up with the most sensible deduction. The detectives find and bag evidence at the scene of the crime. Supposedly, they should collect anything that looks like an evidence which can be used in court hearings 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. Through this, they can get to the mind of a criminal and discover any hidden clues and patterns. 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 is also applicable when it comes to knowing what tactics a drug cartel is up to. Other general research can help them narrow down a suspect better or deduce the crime scene in a more efficient way.
Reducing the list of possible suspects
The goal of a detective’s job is to bring justice to light and bring the culprit to justice. They will need to have a list of the suspects first before such thing could happen. 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. The list will then be narrowed down by interrogating suspects one after another. Once the list is narrowed down, they will then proceed to gathering evidence or having the suspect admit to his crimes.
Testifying In Court
One of the final jobs of a detective on a case is to ensure that justice is served. To help with the process, they are sometimes summoned to the court to testify against the suspect(s). 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. There are also cases where the one at fault will be escorted by the detective.
Houlton Private Detectives
Basically, the above mentioned roles are the responsibilities that detectives carry. 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 have to be subtle in their ways and act as a normal citizen in carrying out the duties of a detective. Detectives are also prohibited from arresting an individual.
Basically, you can see that the television has been portraying detectives properly for the most part. But the jobs that these detectives (private and public) must undergo daily are stressful beyond comparison. That is never shown properly on television 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 the job still has you intrigued, then find out how long it takes to become a detective now!