Detectives & Criminal Investigators

evidence enterprising law information investigation suspect record crime scene witness

Criminal Investigator, Detective, Investigator, Special Agent

What they do:
Conduct investigations related to suspected violations of federal, state, or local laws to prevent or solve crimes.
On the job, you would:
  • Check victims for signs of life, such as breathing and pulse.
  • Obtain facts or statements from complainants, witnesses, and accused persons and record interviews, using recording device.
  • Secure deceased body and obtain evidence from it, preventing bystanders from tampering with it prior to medical examiner's arrival.

Knowledge

Safety and Government

  • law and government
  • public safety and security

Arts and Humanities

  • English language

Business

  • customer service
  • administrative services

Math and Science

  • psychology

Skills

Basic Skills

  • listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
  • talking to others

Problem Solving

  • noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it

Social

  • understanding people's reactions
  • changing what is done based on other people's actions

Abilities

Verbal

  • listen and understand what people say
  • communicate by speaking

Ideas and Logic

  • make general rules or come up with answers from lots of detailed information
  • notice when problems happen

Visual Understanding

  • see hidden patterns
  • quickly know what you are looking at

Attention

  • do two or more things at the same time

Personality

People interested in this work like activities that include leading, making decisions, and business.

They do well at jobs that need:

  • Integrity
  • Self Control
  • Dependability
  • Stress Tolerance
  • Attention to Detail
  • Adaptability/Flexibility

Technology

You might use software like this on the job:

Graphics or photo imaging software

  • Adobe Systems Adobe Photoshop Hot Technology
  • Graphics software

Presentation software

  • Microsoft PowerPoint Hot Technology

Data base user interface and query software

  • Microsoft Access Hot Technology
  • Structured query language SQL

Education

Education: (rated 3 of 5)
high school diploma/GED or
associate's degree
usually needed

Get started on your career:

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Job Outlook

Average
New job opportunities are likely in the future.
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See more details at O*NET OnLine about detectives and criminal investigators.