Detention Officer Salary

An average Detention Officer in the United States can expect to take home roughly $16.36 per hour. Earnings generally vary between $11.73 per hour and $23.27. Career length and the particular city each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. There are more male Detention Officers than female among those who completed the questionnaire, making up 66 percent. A large number report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a fair number collect dental insurance. The figures in this rundown are based on the results of PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$22,663 - $48,156
(Median)
$23K
$33K
$48K
MEDIAN: $32,614
10%
50%
90%

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$11.73 - $23.27
(Median)
$12
$16
$23
MEDIAN: $16.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$17K$34K$51K
Salary
$22,663 - $48,156  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,208  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$24,149 - $50,421  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 161
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$12$24$36
Hourly Rate
$11.73 - $23.27  
   
Overtime
$14.25 - $34.97  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$24K$48K$72K
Bonus
$0.00 - $1,208  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$24,149 - $50,421  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 12 Jan 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 241
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Job Description for Detention Officer

A detention officer is a person who is assigned to a prison, jail, or other detention facility. These facilities typically house convicted criminals or persons who are being held, prior to standing trial. The detention officer works to maintain order within the facility and to ensure that inmates are safely held and guarded, as directed by court sentences or criminal law procedures.

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Detention Officer Tasks

  • Responsible for transporting or moving prisoners.
  • Receive and secure prisoners until their release.
  • Maintain security of the jail or institution.
  • Supervise prisoners and maintain security, rules, regulations and cleanliness in correctional facility.

Common Career Paths for Detention Officer


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Detention Officers who transition into an upper level Correctional Officer position will not necessarily make much more than they do in their current role. The average Correctional Officer makes $34K a year.

Correctional Officer / Jailer Job Listings

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Pay by Experience Level for Detention Officer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Detention Officers with a rich background of experience are typically rewarded with larger paychecks. The average inexperienced worker's salary is approximately $32K, and people with five to 10 years of experience bring in more at around $37K on average. Detention Officers claiming one to two decades of experience make an estimated median of $42K. Seasoned workers who boast more than two decades of relevant experience enjoy a median salary of $49K, which is substantially larger than the medians reported by folks with fewer years on their resumes.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $33,941

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

For Detention Officers, working in the bustling city of Phoenix has its advantages, including an above-average pay rate. Detention Officers will also find cushy salaries in Houston (+17 percent), Charlotte (+13 percent), San Antonio (+3 percent), and Dallas (+1 percent). In Atlanta, salaries are 11 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market.

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Experience Affects Detention Officer Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 45%

Experienced
up arrow 24%

Mid-Career
up arrow 8%

National Average
$34,000


Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 51 votes.

Gender

Female
34 %
Male
66 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
11%
1-4 years
44%
5-9 years
23%
10-19 years
19%
20 years or more
3%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 90%
dental benefits
Dental: 75%
medical benefits
Vision: 67%
dental benefits
None: 9%
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