Santa Ana California Detective Salary And Job Requirements

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. However, we turn this dream into a reality along the way. 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.

Private detective career summary

***image credit – BLS.gov

police detective career summary

***image credit – BLS.gov

Table Of Contents

Salary of a Detective

The employer is the one who will decide regarding the detective’s salary. In most circumstances, a state employed investigator earns more than 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. Let’s take a look at the factors affecting a state employed investigators’ salary at the moment.

Size of population

Like police officers, the population of a city decides the income of a detective. The number of cases to be handled by a detective increases if the city is more populated. Therefore, the salary increases as well. 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.

police detective salary by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

Place assigned or working

Crime rate and population of the place are closely related to the location. But there is another factor, which is the 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. A pay of $116,00 is usually received by employees in District of Columbia, Alaska and New Jersey.

Education background

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. But, the importance of higher education is considered by some states and departments that is why a degree after high school is a factor that affects the salary of the officers and detectives. This can be an associate, bachelor or a master’s degree. You will be paid more depending on your degree.

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. 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.

Santa Ana 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.

Private investigator salary by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

You will know here that a state-employed detective’s income is steady and through various means it can be increased. The salary of a private investigator cannot be determined and by being famous it can be increased. Based on these financial facts, you will be able to decide the path to go.

Santa Ana Detective’s Career Path

First, let’s talk about the growth in the fields. 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. 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. This is the same growth rate of 5% in different sectors. For public investigators, this is only 4% of the figure. Meaning to say, in 2025 it is expected that there will be 4,000 more jobs as a criminal investigator. This can be considered as an average rate of growth as well.

The increasing population is the reason behind this steady increase in employment. 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. Hence, there is a balance in each other, which leads to average growth in both careers.

police detective employment by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

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 move on to the industries that hire most of these two professionals. As clear as day, The Local, State government and the Federal branch employ the most number 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.

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. When combining the aspects of geography and finance, the District of Columbia, Alaska, and New Jersey is paying most the Public investigators. It is in Alabama, Nebraska, and New Jersey were private detectives are paid most.

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.

Private investigator career outlook by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

Qualifications to Become a Santa Ana Detective

Detectives come in two kinds. General public can hire some private investigators to investigate certain things. There are those who are government employees and after being promoted as a police officer gets the post. Here we shall explore both the avenues.

Complete High School

Due to excellent deduction skills, a deductive is able to take a leap from a police officer to a detective position. 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.

Earn a Bachelor’s degree

A bachelor’s degree isn’t really necessary in most cases when becoming a police officer. Although some officers would like to have other means of employment right after retirement. Likewise, you will need a bachelor degree if you want to become a detective.

Many institutions require applicants to have a bachelor’s degree in law, criminal justice or psychology 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.

Gain 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. However, the most common way is to be employed by the government first. 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.

The experience required might vary from one state to another. There are some that only require 3 years of experience, but some might need at least five.

Acquire a license for your guns

Investigators who don’t have a firearms permit are prohibited from carrying their guns. 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.

Undergo a California licensing test

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. If you managed to pass, you will become a licensed private investigator.

File for California 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.

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 that doesn’t scare you away, then you should fulfill all the requirements as soon as possible.

What Does A Detective Do In Santa Ana?

Crime Scene Investigation

One of the main duties of a detective is to analyze a crime scene and deduce certain assumptions from it. 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. To help them deduce a lot of things more quickly and easily, the forensic department will sometimes offer them assistance. Detectives should gather as many clues and evidences as possible by analyzing cameras and gathering information from eye witnesses.

Criminal Research

An important aspect of a detective’s duties is to research previous case files in their free time. They do so to gain more knowledge about criminal behavior and identify patterns that people usually follow. In most cases, this will mean researching into previous records for them to know how the culprit might operate. Research is definitely of great help when it comes to tracking down serial killers. 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.

Narrowing down suspects

A detective’s main objective is to take the one at fault to justice. But to do this, they first need to a list of possible suspects. This suspect pool maybe as big as 100 people or as small as none. They create this suspect list by drawing conclusions from the evidence gathered at the crime, eyewitnesses, research and a bit of criminal/forensic psychology. This suspect pool is then narrowed down by getting alibis from some suspects and interrogating others. With a narrowed down list, they will then have the suspects admit to their crimes.

Testifying In Court

Lastly, detectives will see to it that justice is served properly. To hasten the process, the court will sometimes summon them. 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.

Santa Ana Private Detectives

The above duties are what a detective is expected to do. 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 are allowed to only bend certain laws to a minimalistic extent to help them complete 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. Moreover, arresting someone is out of their jurisdiction.

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. Supposedly, they should carefully collect any clue and evidence since they carry such heavy responsibility on their shoulders. If you think being a detective is the right job for you, then you should do research about it now!