Becoming a detective is a dream for those who grow up watching detective and serial movies. After knowing the character of Sherlock Holmes, we assume to be like him. However, we turn this dream into a reality along the way. Crime rate continue to increase that is why the need for detectives to solve them rises. This is where some police officers step up and exhibit the Sherlock Holmes in them. 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 basis of a detective’s salary at first will depend 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. The national average that is earned by a detective who is employed by the state is $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. Here are the factors that affect the salary of investigators that are state employed.
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. Therefore, the salary increases as well. Similarly, crime rate also plays a major factor in deciding the salary of an investigator. For instance, someone in the LA police department will get an average salary of $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.
Place assigned or working
Crime rate and population of the place are closely related to the location. 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 is true with the case of private investigators as well. A pay of $116,00 is usually received by employees in District of Columbia, Alaska and New Jersey.
One can have a police job if he or she has a high school degree except at the federal level. 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. The degree could be associate, bachelor or master’s. 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. 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.
Portland 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.
As you can see, the income of a state-employed detective is steady and can be increased by various means. On the other hand, a private investigator’s salary is quite unpredictable and will only increase if he or she is already popular or known. The path to choose will be determined based in the financial facts you have.
Portland 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. Private detectives have grown for about 5% in the industry. 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. This figure is only 4% for public investigators. Meaning to say, in 2025 it is expected that there will be 4,000 more jobs as a criminal investigator. This too is an average rate of growth.
The steady increase in employment is mainly due to the increase in population. As the population increases, more people need to be protected and more criminals need to be caught. But due to the strict implementation of laws and technology are more advanced, the crime rate is not increasing that much. Thus, both the phenomena almost balance each other out leading to an average growth in both these careers.
The highest number of Criminal/Law Enforcement Investigators are found in Texas, California and New York. The employment in western states and Texas are higher that to that of the eastern parts. 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. 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. It is in Alabama, Nebraska, and New Jersey were private detectives are paid most.
Compared with the different industries, private industries where they employ most do not pay the highest. SinceElectromedical, Navigational, Power generation, Metal Product forming and other such industries have to protect sensitive information that is why pirvate detective are paid most by them. For public investigators, they are paid most by federal agencies, postal services, and educational institutes.
Qualifications to Become a Portland 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. The others are employed by the government and reach this post after being promoted from a police officer. We are going to explore here the different avenues.
Complete High School
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 Yourself 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. Likewise, you will need a bachelor degree if you want to become a detective.
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. A total of 5000 hours of training is given to anyone with an associate’s degree. But for someone with a bachelor’s degree, the required training is only 4000 hours.
You need to experience working as an investigator first before you can become a professional detective. You can find several ways to do so. However, the most common way is to be employed by the government first. You will be regarded as a person with experience if you worked as a criminal investigator or an arson investigator. Other than these, you can also choose to Public defender’s office investigator or a licensed repossessor.
There might be variations in the required experience in the state you’re applying in. There are some that only require 3 years of experience, but some might need at least five.
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. Hence, to get a permit for your firearm when working as an investigator, you will need to complete the full training course.
Obtain Oregon 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. Those who are looking to be a private detective will need to take this test. After passing this test, you are officially a private investigator with a license.
File for Oregon insurance
Due to the dangerous nature of the work, you should make sure to get an insurance. Typically, we’re talking about a $10,000 medical insurance. 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. But be careful – as mentioned before, this can be a dangerous 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 Portland
Crime Scene Investigation
It will be a detective’s duty to carefully assess a crime scene and come up with the most sensible deduction. It will also include searching for clues and collecting evidences. They are supposed to take anything into custody that may look suspicious and may be used for clues or in the court later. Sometimes the forensic investigation department lends them a hand in analyzing the evidence and thus helping them deduce more things about the crime. To collect more clues and evidence, detectives will need to go door to door and ask any possible eye witnesses.
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. 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. 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 whole objective of everything that a detective does is to serve justice to the person who has committed the crime. But to do this, they first need to a list of possible suspects. In some cases, it could include over a hundred people, but there are also cases where there is none. With the help of evidence, research, statements, and forensic studies, they are able to come up with such list. By means of getting statements from suspects, detectives are able to narrow down their list. 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). In some cases, they will describe the evidence and how they are connected to the suspect, as well as narrating the possible crime scene. Sometimes, the detectives are also required to escort the culprit to jail.
Portland Private Detectives
Basically, the above mentioned roles are the responsibilities that detectives carry. 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 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. When carrying out duties as a detective, they should make sure not to look suspicious and act like a normal citizen. Detectives are also prohibited from arresting an individual.
Basically, you can see that the television has been portraying detectives properly 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. 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!