Growing up watching detective serials and movies, everyone wants to become a detective. 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. Crime rate continue to increase that is why the need for detectives to solve them rises. This is the reason why some police officers are trying to be like Sherlock Holmes. If becoming a detective someday is a burning desire of yours, the information listed below is a great help.
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. Let’s take a look at the factors affecting a state employed investigators’ salary at the moment.
Just like police officers, the income of a detective is dependent on the city’s population. The number of cases to be handled by a detective increases if the city is more populated. Therefore, the salary increases as well. One of the major factors in deciding the salary of an investigator is the crime rate. For example, the average salary for someone who is in the LA police department will range from $44,000 to $88,000. Compared to someone in Miami Police department, the average salary ranges from $86,000 to $107,000.
Place assigned or working
The location is closely related to the population of the place and the crime rate. However, another factor comes into play in such conditions – cost of living. Higher the cost of living in a certain location, higher the detective is paid. Private investigators will also have this case. 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. This rules do not apply in all states but higher education certificates are not required in most 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 may be an associate’s, bachelor’s or even a master’s degree. You will be paid more depending on your degree.
Number of years in the field
You will be paid as an investigator if you will be working in the field for a long period of time. Usually, people see an increase of up to $15,000 with 20 years of experience if they do not get promoted. You can earn about $180,000 annually if you reach the post of Police Chief as a promotion.
Visalia Private Investigators
A private investigator’s salary depends on the number of cases he or she takes and solves. As mentioned before, the location can affect the price along with the many other factors such as the amount of discretion needed, the amount of danger involved, extra equipment required and many other 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). Now that you have the financial facts, you can decide which path to choose.
Visalia 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. 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. 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 is also considered as the average growth rate.
The steady increase in employment is mainly due to the increase in population. 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.
Geographically speaking, Texas, California and New York employ the highest number of Criminal / Law Enforcement Investigators. The employment in western states and Texas are higher that to that of the eastern parts. Private detectives in California, Texas and Florida with the southern part are higher in number compared to the northern ones.
Let’s now find out where these two professionals are hired most by industires. Criminalinvestigaors are being hired mostly by The Local, State government and the Federal branch. On the other hand, private detectives are usually hired by Security Services, Consulting services and occasionally by the local government 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. 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. 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. Moving on to Public Investigators, federal agencies, postal services, and educational institutes pay the most.
How can You Qualify as a Detective In Visalia
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. 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.
Finish your High School Studies
A detective is generally a police officer who has been promoted to that position because of his or her skills of deduction. Hence if you want to become a detective, it is generally necessary to graduate from high school and enlist in the police force. 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. However, some police officers prefer to have one as a means of employment after they retire. A bachelor’s degree is also required to pursue any jobs at the federal level or 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. 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.
Professional experience as an investigator is required in order to 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. 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. 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. 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
Once you have fulfilled the requirements, you will need to take a state licensing examination. During the exam, you will need to answer questions in multiple choice, usually regarding about state laws and several other procedures. Those who are looking to be a private detective will need to take this test. 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. However, it is important to also get a higher amount if you carry a firearm since you need to protect yourself from greater dangers and insure the gun itself.
Simply follow through all steps and you’ll have nothing to worry about. You can now start living the detective life you always wanted. 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 Visalia
Crime Scene Investigation
One of the main duties of a detective is to analyze a crime scene and deduce certain assumptions from it. 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. In some cases, detectives can receive aid from the forensic investigation department, hence allowing them to come up with more deductions regarding the crime. Detectives should gather as many clues and evidences as possible by analyzing cameras and gathering information from eye witnesses.
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. In cases of serial killers or ‘copycats’, research helps a lot. This also helps detectives take down drug cartels by allowing them to identify any tactics being used. Research also helps detectives make deductions more efficiently.
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. This suspect pool maybe as big as 100 people or as small as 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. This suspect pool is then narrowed down by getting alibis from some suspects and interrogating others. 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 hasten the process, the court will sometimes summon them. In some cases, they will describe the evidence and how they are connected to the suspect, as well as narrating the possible crime scene. There are also cases where the one at fault will be escorted by the detective.
Visalia Private Detectives
All the above duties were that of a public detective or a law enforcement detective. The job description of a detective 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. Private detectives are often hired for tasks such as gathering evidence from someone, monitoring certain individuals, or even tracking finances. They should never act in a way that they can be easily recognized as a detective in public. Detectives are also prohibited from arresting an individual.
As you can see, the “Idiot Box” was right 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. 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!