Those who are fond of watching detective serials and movies want to become a detective in the future as well. 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 Does A Detective Make
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 because a private detective has intermittent work while the state employed has a steady work. The national average for a state-employed detective is $76,000. For a private detective, he or she can earn about $45,000. Later, you will know about what affects a PI’s salary. For now, let us look at the factors that affect the salary of state employed investigators.
Number of People
Just like police officers, the income of a detective is dependent on the city’s population. A more populated city will mean more cases to be handled. Thus, the increase in salary. 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. Whereas, a member of the Miami Police department usually get $86,000 to $107,000 salary.
The location is just the same us with the population of the place and rate of the crime. However, another factor comes into play in such conditions – cost of living. 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.
A high school degree is sufficient for those who want any police job except for the federal level. States have different rules but a higher education certificate is not necessary in some 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. The degree could be associate, bachelor or master’s. Your degree will affect your salary.
Number of years in the field
Like any other job, you will get earn as an investigator if you stay in the field long enough. 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. But if you are promoted as a Police Chief, you will be paid about $180,000 per year.
Jacksonville Private Investigators
A private investigator’s salary depends on the number of cases he or she takes and solves. 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.
You will know here that a state-employed detective’s income is steady and through various means it can be increased. On the hand, the salary of a private investigator is quite unpredictable and can only be increased by fame (or rather being more discrete). The path to choose will be determined based in the financial facts you have.
Career Outlook of a Jacksonville Detective
What we are going to talk about first is the growth in the fields. There were about 106,000 public detectives or criminal investigators on record in 2015. Meanwhile, private investigators who do the same job were only 30,000. Private detectives have grown for about 5% in the industry. Meaning to say, in 2025 the new jobs open will reach 1,500. This growth rate is following the average growth rate of 5% across all other sectors. This figure is only 4% for public investigators. This means there is going to be around 4,000 more jobs as a criminal investigator by 2025. This can be considered as an average rate of growth as well.
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. There are a lot of private detectives hired in California, Texas and Florida with the southern states compared in the northern part.
Let’s see what are the industries that hire these professionals most. 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.
Criminal investigators get higher payments than the private ones. Their annual average salary is $80,000 (Criminal investigators) and that of Private investigators is around $52,000. When combining the aspects of geography and finance, the District of Columbia, Alaska, and New Jersey is paying most the Public investigators. Private detectives receive higher payment in Alabama, Nebraska, and New Jersey.
Private industries that employ most do not pay the highest in comparison with the different industires. 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.
Qualifications to Become a Jacksonville Detective
Keep in mind that there are two kinds of detectives. Some of them are private investigators who can be hired by the general public to investigate on certain things. The others are employed by the government and reach this post after being promoted from a police officer. We will explore both avenues here.
Be a High School Graduate
A detective is known for his deduction skills, and it is due to such that he is promoted to such position. Hence if you want to become a detective, it is generally necessary to graduate from high school and enlist in the police force. Becoming a private investigator would mean getting a high school degree.
Earn a 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. On the other hand, someone with a bachelor’s degree needs only 4000 hours of training.
Get enough experience
To become a professional detective (not employed by the state), you need to have some professional experience as an investigator. There are many ways to get this. But in most cases, it will require you to be employed by the government. Landing work as a law enforcement investigator, arson investigator, or criminal investigator will count as being a person with experience. Working as an office investigator or as a licensed repossessor will count as well.
There might be variations in the required experience in the state you’re applying in. Some states require you to have 3 years of experience while others require 5 years.
Get firearms permits
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 Florida licensure exam
A licensure test is required after you have all the requirements needed. 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.
File for Florida insurance
Due to the dangerous nature of the work, you should make sure to get an insurance. Basically, this is a medical insurance worth $10,000. But since you’re carrying a gun with you for extra protection, and you will have to insure the gun as well, getting a higher amount will be an ideal choice.
Simply follow through all steps and you’ll have nothing to worry about. You can finally fulfill your dream and become a detective! 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 Jacksonville
Crime Scene Investigation
One main role of a detective is to take a look at a crime scene and make certain deductions. He will then collect any evidence he can find in the crime scene. They are supposed to take anything into custody that may look suspicious and may be used for clues or in the court later. In some cases, detectives can receive aid from the forensic investigation department, hence allowing them to come up with more deductions regarding the crime. They are also supposed to go door to door and gather more evidence from eye witnesses or search for cameras wherever they might be installed.
One of the core aspects of a detective’s duty is doing research and groundwork regarding previous cases. They do so to gain more knowledge about criminal behavior and identify patterns that people usually follow. Often, research into the past and previous case files give them an idea or a clue as to how the current culprit might be operating. Research is definitely of great help when it comes to tracking down serial killers. It also helps to identify tactics that a drug cartel might be using thus helping the detectives shut them down. Through the help of general research, it will be a lot easier for detectives to identify the culprit or make any accurate deductions.
Reducing the list of possible suspects
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. This suspect pool maybe as big as 100 people or as small as none. With the help of evidence, research, statements, and forensic studies, they are able to come up with such list. 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
Lastly, detectives will see to it that justice is served properly. To help with the process, they are sometimes summoned to the court to testify against the suspect(s). They will often describe the scenario of the crime, and present evidences that will prove the crimes of the criminal. Sometimes, the detectives are also required to escort the culprit to jail.
Jacksonville Private Detectives
All the above duties were that of a public detective or a law enforcement detective. A private detective’s job description is a bit loose. They will need to fulfill the needs of their clients especially when it comes to research. However, they are allowed to only bend certain laws to a minimalistic extent to help them complete their duties. Some of the reasons why private detectives are hired include doing background checks, tracking finances, and even collecting clues and evidence to be used against a certain person. When carrying out duties as a detective, they should make sure not to look suspicious and act like a normal citizen. They are however, not allowed to arrest anyone.
As you can see, the “Idiot Box” was right for the most part. The thing is, the duties and roles detectives undertake every single day are very stressful. Such things aren’t even shown on the TV. They are always supposed to look over their shoulder and ensure they do not miss any single clue since lives literally depend on them. If the job still has you intrigued, then find out how long it takes to become a detective now!