Wheeling West Virginia 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. 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. 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 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. For a private detective, he or she can earn about $45,000. We shall discuss factors affecting a PI’s salary later. Here are the factors that affect the salary of investigators that are state employed.

Size of population

The income of a detective depends on the population of a city the same to that of the police officers. If the city is more populated, then the number of cases that need to be handled also rises. In this case, the salary will increase. 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. 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

Place assigned or working

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. If the place has higher cost of living, the detective’s salary will also be higher. 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.

Educational degree

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. The degree could be associate, bachelor or master’s. Your degree will affect your salary.

Experience

Your length of stay in the field will be a consideration on how much you will earn as an investigator. 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. But if you are promoted as a Police Chief, you will be paid about $180,000 per year.

Wheeling Private Investigators

The salary of a private investigator depends on the how many cases he or she takes and solves them. 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. Clients usually present their problem to the investigator and then it is up to them to quote a price for the job.

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. Now that you have the financial facts, you can decide which path to choose.

Career Outlook of a Wheeling Detective

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. There were about 30,000 private investigators who do the same job on record. 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. On the other hand, for public investigators, this figure is at 4%. This goes to show that 4,000 more jobs as a criminal investigator is expected in 2025. This too is an average rate of growth.

The employment increases steadily because the population increases. Because of the increase in population, 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. 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

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 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. Whereas private detectives are being hired by Security Services, Consulting services and the local government for consultation purposes on a few cases.

When it comes to finance, criminal investigators are paid more compared to the private ones. Criminal investigators receive $80,000 as average salary annually while Private investigators earn $52,000 only. When you combine the aspects of geography and finance, you see that District of Columbia, Alaska, and New Jersey paid the most (6 figure salaries) for Public investigators. Private detectives receive higher payment in Alabama, Nebraska, and New Jersey.

Private industries that employ most do not pay the highest in comparison with the different industires. 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.

Private investigator career outlook by state

***image credit – BLS.gov

Qualifications to Become a Wheeling Detective

It is important to note 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. 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. 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. A high school degree is likewise necessary if you want to be a private investigator.

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. 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. Anyone with an associate’s degree is given training up to 5000 hours. However, the time required is reduced to 4000 hours if you have a bachelor’s degree.

Get enough 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. Getting employed by the government is basically the most common method. If you have any experience as an arson investigator, criminal investigator or a law enforcement investigator, you are qualified as a person with experience. However, you can also choose to work as a licensed repossessor or office investigator.

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.

Own a gun legally

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. Therefore if you want to own a firearm while working as an investigator, completing the training course is necessary to get your own permit.

Complete a West Virginia licensure exam

Once you have fulfilled the requirements, you will need to take a state licensing examination. 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.

Insure Yourself

Being a detective is dangerous, hence it is a good idea to get your 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.

Complete all these steps and then voila! You can finally fulfill your dream and become a detective! But be careful – as mentioned before, this can be a dangerous line of work. If you want to pursue your dreams, learn all about the requirements and complete them as soon as you can.

Wheeling Detective Job Description?

Crime Scene Investigation

One main role of a detective is to take a look at a crime scene and make certain deductions. He will then collect any evidence he can find in the crime scene. 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. To collect more clues and evidence, detectives will need to go door to door and ask any possible eye witnesses.

Criminal Research

Doing research regarding previous cases is regarded as an important aspect of a detective’s job. Through this, they can get to the mind of a criminal and discover any hidden clues and patterns. 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. 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.

Narrowing down 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. In some cases, it could include over a hundred people, but there are also cases where there is 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. The list will then be narrowed down by interrogating suspects one after another. 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 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. In some cases, they will even accompany the culprit to the jail.

Wheeling Private Detectives

Basically, the above mentioned roles are the responsibilities that detectives carry. The job description of a detective 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. 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. Moreover, arresting someone is out of their jurisdiction.

As you can see, the “Idiot Box” was right for the most part. The thing is, the duties and roles detectives undertake every single day are very stressful. 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 you think being a detective is the right job for you, then you should do research about it now!

Pursuing A Career As A Detective?

I Am! Not At The Moment...

Perfect! Let's get you matched with college programs in your area.

Let's Do It!

Law Enforcement is a rewarding and lucrative career option.

It doesn't cost anything to check out local programs!

OK, Let's Check It Out