Growing up watching detective serials and movies, everyone wants to become a detective. Assuming to be like Sherlock Holmes is normal for us after we have known his character. However, somewhere along the way, we forget this dream of ours and work towards more “realistic” goals. Since crime rate is increasing these days, more detectives are needed in order 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 base salary of a detective first depends 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. Later, you will know about what affects a PI’s salary. 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. Thus, the increase in salary. The crime rate also affects the salary of an investigator. For instance, someone in the LA police department will get an average salary of $44,000 to $88,000. Compared to someone in Miami Police department, the average salary ranges from $86,000 to $107,000.
The location is just the same us with the population of the place and rate of the crime. However, cost of living is another factor to consider. A detective will be paid higher if the cost of living in that certain location is higher. 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. Though this rules sometimes varies with state, most states do not require higher education certificates. However, officers and detectives are paid more if they have a degree after high school as there are states and departments who consider higher education important. This can be an associate, bachelor or a master’s degree. Your degree will affect your salary.
Like any other job, you will get earn as an investigator if you stay in the field long enough. An increase of up to $20,000 will be given to those who work in the field for 20 years if they don’t get a promotion. You can earn about $180,000 annually if you reach the post of Police Chief as a promotion.
Woodstown Private Investigators
A private investigator’s salary depends on the number of cases he or she takes and solves. 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.
As you can see, the income of a state-employed detective is steady and can be increased by various means. 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.
Woodstown Detective’s Career Path
What we are going to talk about first is the growth in the fields. There were about 106,000 public detectives or criminal investigators recorded in 2015. 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 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 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. However, with stricter laws and more advanced technology being use, the crime rate isn’t increasing that significantly. Hence, there is a balance in each other, which leads to average growth in both careers.
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. Private detectives in California, Texas and Florida with the southern part are higher in number compared to the northern ones.
Let’s see what are the industries that hire these professionals most. The Local, State government and the Federal branch are employing a lot 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.
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. Public investigators are paid most in District of Columbia, Alaska, and New Jersey in the aspects of geography and finance. 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. Moving on to Public Investigators, federal agencies, postal services, and educational institutes pay the most.
How can You Qualify as a Detective In Woodstown
Detectives come in two kinds. General public can hire some private investigators to investigate certain things. Some of them are employed by the government and get this post after their promotion as a police officer. We will explore both avenues here.
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
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. 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. Anyone with an associate’s degree is given training up to 5000 hours. But for someone with a bachelor’s degree, the required training is only 4000 hours.
Get the right amount of experience
You need to experience working as an investigator first before you can become a professional detective. Fortunately, you have several options available. But in most cases, it will require you to be employed by the government. If you have any experience as an arson investigator, criminal investigator or a law enforcement investigator, you are qualified as a person with experience. Working as an office investigator or as a licensed repossessor will count as well.
There might be variations in the required experience in the state you’re applying in. Some states require you to have 3 years of experience while others require 5 years.
Own a gun legally
Investigators who don’t have a firearms permit are prohibited from carrying their guns. Some firearms will need you to undertake a full training course in order to get your permit. Hence, to get a permit for your firearm when working as an investigator, you will need to complete the full training course.
Undergo a New Jersey licensing test
After completing all the education and experience requirements, you are required to undergo a state licensing test. 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. Once you pass, you will officially become a licensed private detective.
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. 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.
Complete all these steps and then voila! Your steps towards becoming a successful detective is finally within your reach. However, don’t forget that being a detective would mean exposing yourself to danger. If you are still up for it, find out all the education requirements in detail and get started on them right away!
Responsibilities of Being a Detective in Woodstown
Crime Scene Investigation
One main role of a detective is to take a look at a crime scene and make certain deductions. 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. 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.
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. 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. 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. 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. By means of getting statements from suspects, detectives are able to narrow down their list. 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. 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.
Woodstown Private Detectives
The above duties are what a detective is expected to do. A private detective’s job description is a bit loose. They are supposed to carry out their client’s wishes to the best of their abilities as far as reconnaissance is concerned. 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. When carrying out duties as a detective, they should make sure not to look suspicious and act like a normal citizen. They are however, not allowed to arrest anyone.
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. 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’re really interested with the job, you should start knowing what it takes to be a detective now!