Those who are fond of watching detective serials and movies want to become a detective in the future as well. The thrill of deducing never really leaves us especially after getting to know the character of Sherlock Holmes. However, somewhere along the way, we forget this dream of ours and work towards more “realistic” goals. Crime rate continue to increase that is why the need for detectives to solve them rises. Thus, some police officers step up and exhibiting what Sherlock Holmes does. 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
How Much a Detective Earns
The basis of a detective’s salary at first will depend 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. The national average that is earned by a detective who is employed by the state is $76,000. For a private detective, he or she can earn about $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.
Number of People
Just like police officers, the income of a detective is dependent on the city’s population. If the city is more populated, then the number of cases that need to be handled also rises. Therefore, the salary increases as well. The crime rate also affects the salary of an investigator. For example, the average salary for someone who is in the LA police department will range from $44,000 to $88,000. Whereas, a member of the Miami Police department usually get $86,000 to $107,000 salary.
Location of job
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. If the place has higher cost of living, the detective’s salary will also be higher. 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. 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. Depending on your degree, you might be paid more.
You will be paid as an investigator if you will be working in the field for a long period of time. For those who are working in the field for 20 years already even if they are not promoted will get up to $15,000 increase. But if you are promoted as a Police Chief, you will be paid about $180,000 per year.
Oceanside Private Investigators
The number of cases and solving them are the bases of a private investigator’s salary. 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 price for the job will be quoted by the investigator after the problem is presented by the clients.
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). Based on these financial facts, you will be able to decide the path to go.
Oceanside 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 recorded in 2015. There were about 30,000 private investigators who do the same job on record. Private detectives have grown for about 5% in the industry. 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. This figure is only 4% for public investigators. 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 increasing population is the reason behind this steady increase in employment. As the population increases, more people need to be protected and more criminals need to be caught. 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.
Geographically speaking, Texas, California and New York employ 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. Security Services, Consulting services are the ones who usually hire private detectives and the local government need them for consultation on a few cases.
When it comes to finance, criminal investigators are paid more compared to the private ones. Their annual average salary is $80,000 (Criminal investigators) and that of Private investigators is around $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.
Comparing with different industries again, we see that for private industries, the most employing industries do not pay the highest. In fact, Electromedical, Navigational, Power generation, Metal Product forming and other such industries paid the most for private detectives since they had the most sensitive information to protect. For public investigators, they are paid most by federal agencies, postal services, and educational institutes.
How To Become A Oceanside Detective
It is important to note 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.
Complete High School
A detective is generally a police officer who has been promoted to that position because of his or her skills of deduction. Thus, a general way in becoming a detective is to first complete high school and get into the police academy to become a police officer. To become a private investigator, a high school degree is a must too.
Get Yourself a Bachelor’s Degree
Usually, you don’t require a bachelor’s degree to get into the police academy. Some officers however want to have another source of income right after they retire from their job. 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. 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 enough experience
You need to experience working as an investigator first before you can become a professional detective. There are many ways to get this. But in most cases, it will require you to be employed by the government. If you have any experience as an arson investigator, criminal investigator or a law enforcement investigator, you are qualified as a person with experience. However, you can also choose to work as a licensed repossessor or office investigator.
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.
Own a gun legally
If an investigator doesn’t have a firearms permit, he won’t be allowed to carry his firearm. There are several firearms with strict requirements such as completing a full training course before the permits are issued. So, if you are planning to become an armed investigator, you will need to go through weapons training course and then get the permit for the required weapons.
Obtain California licensure
A licensure test is required after you have all the requirements needed. 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. After passing this test, you are officially a private investigator with a license.
File for California insurance
Being a detective is dangerous, hence it is a good idea to get your insurance. This is generally medical insurance of about $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.
By completing these steps, you’ll be good to go. Your steps towards becoming a successful detective is finally within your reach. However, don’t forget that being a detective would mean exposing yourself to danger. If that doesn’t scare you away, then you should fulfill all the requirements as soon as possible.
Responsibilities of Being a Detective in Oceanside
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. 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. 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.
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. 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.
Accurately guessing the culprit
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. The list could be long, including up to a hundred people, or short – sometimes none at al. 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. After they narrow it down as much as possible, they collect hard evidence or get the suspect to confess to the 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 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. In some cases, they will even accompany the culprit to the jail.
Oceanside 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. Supposedly, detectives should meet their client’s needs regardless of how difficult it might seem, especially in terms of research. However, they can only go as far as certain laws will allow them when going on with their job. 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. Moreover, arresting someone is out of their jurisdiction.
As you can see, the “Idiot Box” was right for the most part. However, the roles and responsibilities that detectives carry aren’t as easy as they seem. Such things aren’t even shown on the TV. 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!