West Columbia South Carolina 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, somewhere along the way, we forget this dream of ours and work towards more “realistic” goals. In recent years, due to the increased rate of crime, there is a greater need for detectives to solve them. Thus, some police officers step up and exhibiting what Sherlock Holmes does. If becoming a detective someday is a burning desire of yours, the information listed below is a great help.

Private detective career summary

***image credit – BLS.gov

police detective career summary

***image credit – BLS.gov

Table Of Contents

How Much Does A Detective Make

The employer is the one who will decide regarding the detective’s salary. An investigator who is employed by the state earns more than a private one in most cases. 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. Whereas the average salary for a private detective can be around $45,000. 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.

Population Size

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 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.

police detective salary by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

Job location

Crime rate and population of the place are closely related to the location. But there is another factor, which is the cost of living. Higher the cost of living in a certain location, higher the detective is paid. Private investigators will also have this case. A pay of $116,00 is usually received by employees in District of Columbia, Alaska and New Jersey.

Educational degree

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. Depending on your degree, you might be paid more.

Work Experience

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. However, with promotions, if you reach the post of Police Chief, you can earn about $180,000 annually.

West Columbia Private Investigators

The number of cases and solving them are the bases of a private investigator’s salary. The location, amount of discretion needed, amount of danger involved, required extra equipment and other many things are the factors mentioned above that can affect the price. The investigator will quote the job price after the clients presented their problem.

Private investigator salary by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

A state-employed detective has a steady income that will increase by various means as described here. 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.

Career Outlook of a West Columbia Detective

First thing first, we will be talking about career growth in this field. In 2015, the recorded public detectives or criminals investigators are about 106,000. 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 is the same growth rate of 5% in different 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 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. Because of this, both the phenomena are just the same leading to average growth in each career.

police detective employment by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

In terms of location, Texas, California and New York have 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. 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.

Financially speaking, criminal investigators do get paid more than 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. 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.

Private investigator career outlook by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

Qualifications to Become a West Columbia Detective

It is important to note that there are two kinds of detectives. There are private investigators that the general public can hire to investigate on certain things. The others are employed by the government and reach this post after being promoted from a police officer. Here we shall explore both the avenues.

Finish your High School Studies

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. To become a private investigator, a high school degree is a must too.

Earn 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. 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. A total of 5000 hours of training is given to anyone with an associate’s degree. On the other hand, someone with a bachelor’s degree needs only 4000 hours of training.

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. 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. However, you can also choose to work as a licensed repossessor or office investigator.

Depending on the state you are applying in, the requirements of experience change. A state might require at least 3 years of experience, but in some it could be as long as 5 years.

Own a gun legally

If an investigator doesn’t have a firearms permit, he won’t be allowed to carry his firearm. Some firearms will need you to undertake a full training course in order to get your permit. Therefore if you want to own a firearm while working as an investigator, completing the training course is necessary to get your own permit.

Obtain South Carolina 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. The test is only available for those who want to be private detectives. Once you pass, you will officially become a licensed private detective.

Get South Carolina 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. However, getting an even higher amount when you bring a firearm is necessary since you need to have some protection with you.

Simply follow through all steps and you’ll have nothing to worry about. Your steps towards becoming a successful detective is finally within your reach. 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 West Columbia?

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 will need to keep anything suspicious that might lead to solving the case. Sometimes the forensic investigation department lends them a hand in analyzing the evidence and thus helping them deduce more things about 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.

Criminal Research

Doing research regarding previous cases is regarded as an important aspect of a detective’s job. They do so to gain more knowledge about criminal behavior and identify patterns that people usually follow. This involves looking into previous case records to allow them to have an insight regarding the behavior of the criminal. Research is definitely of great help when it comes to tracking down serial killers. 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.

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. 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

As part of their final job, detectives will need to make sure 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. There are also cases where the one at fault will be escorted by the detective.

West Columbia 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. 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. Moreover, arresting someone is out of their jurisdiction.

You see, the “Idiot Box But the jobs that these detectives (private and public) must undergo daily are stressful beyond comparison. 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!