Becoming a detective is a dream for those who grow up watching detective and serial movies. Assuming to be like Sherlock Holmes is normal for us after we have known his character. But this dream seems to be forgotten and we will work to more realistic goals. In recent years, due to the increased rate of crime, there is a greater need for detectives to solve them. 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
Salary of a Detective
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 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. 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.
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. Thus, the increase in salary. One of the major factors in deciding the salary of an investigator is the crime rate. For example, the average salary for someone in the LA police department ranges 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 closely related to the population of the place and the crime rate. 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. This is true with the case of private investigators as well. 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. States have different rules but a higher education certificate is not necessary in some 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. The degree could be associate, bachelor or master’s. Your degree will affect your salary.
Your length of stay in the field will be a consideration on how much you will earn as an investigator. 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.
Westmoreland 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 price for the job will be quoted by the investigator after the problem is presented by the clients.
A state-employed detective has a steady income that will increase by various means as described here. 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. Based on these financial facts, you will be able to decide the path to go.
Westmoreland Detective’s Career Path
First, let’s talk about the growth in the fields. There were about 106,000 public detectives or criminal investigators recorded 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 is also considered as the average growth rate.
The steady increase in employment is mainly due to the increase in population. Because of the increase in population, more people need to be protected and more criminals need to be caught. However, with stricter laws and more advanced technology being use, the crime rate isn’t increasing that significantly. 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. Western states and Texas show more employment here than the eastern ones. 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. 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. When combining the aspects of geography and finance, the District of Columbia, Alaska, and New Jersey is paying most the Public investigators. Private detectives were paid most in Alabama, Nebraska, and New Jersey.
Private industries that employ most do not pay the highest in comparison with the different industires. 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 Westmoreland 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.
Finish your High School Studies
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.
Get your Bachelor’s Degree
A bachelor’s degree isn’t really necessary in most cases when becoming a police officer. 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.
A bachelor’s degree in either criminal justice or law will be required in most institutions to become 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. There are several firearms with strict requirements such as completing a full training course before the permits are issued. Hence, to get a permit for your firearm when working as an investigator, you will need to complete the full training course.
Complete a Tennessee licensure exam
A licensure test is required after you have all the requirements needed. The test will include questions regarded state laws and have multiple choices to choose from. 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 Tennessee insurance
Due to the dangerous nature of the work, you should make sure to get an insurance. Basically, this is a medical insurance worth $10,000. 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.
Complete all these steps and then voila! 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.
Westmoreland Detective Job Description?
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 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. 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. This is so that they can have an insight regarding criminal patterns and behaviors. In most cases, this will mean researching into previous records for them to know how the culprit might operate. In cases of serial killers or ‘copycats’, research helps a lot. It also helps to identify tactics that a drug cartel might be using thus helping the detectives shut them down. Research also helps detectives make deductions more efficiently.
Reducing the list of possible suspects
The goal of a detective’s job is to bring justice to light and bring the culprit to justice. 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. 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
As part of their final job, detectives will need to make sure justice is served. 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.
Westmoreland Private Detectives
Basically, the above mentioned roles are the responsibilities that detectives carry. 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. But there are limits which they shouldn’t go beyond when carrying out their duties. Some of the reasons why private detectives are hired include doing background checks, tracking finances, and even collecting clues and evidence to be used against a certain person. They have to be subtle in their ways and act as a normal citizen in carrying out the duties of a detective. They are however, not allowed to arrest anyone.
Basically, you can see that the television has been portraying detectives properly for the most part. However, the roles and responsibilities that detectives carry aren’t as easy as they seem. That is never shown properly on television or anywhere else. 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!