Police Investigators who are practiced in their profession and carry more than 10 years of experience make up close to three-fifths of Police Investigators. Pay fluctuates from $34K to $80K per year, but expected earnings average $54K per year. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Police Investigators. The vast majority (88 percent) of Police Investigators who answered the questionnaire are male. Almost all report receiving medical coverage from their employers and a fair number collect dental insurance. Respondents to the PayScale salary survey provided the data for this report.
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$37,617 - $80,356
(Median)
$38K
$54K
$80K
MEDIAN: $54,335
10%
50%
90%

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$14.42 - $48.94
(Median)
$14
$23
$49
MEDIAN: $23.00
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$27K$54K$81K
Salary
$37,617 - $80,356  
   
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).
)
$34,472 - $80,032  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 43
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$17$34$51
Hourly Rate
$14.42 - $48.94  
   
Overtime
$39.31  
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$50K$100K$150K
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).
)
$34,472 - $80,032  
   
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 12
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Job Description for Police Investigator

Police investigators - also called detectives in many jurisdictions - are law enforcement professionals who typically gather and analyze evidence in felony cases. In situations where the perpetrator is unknown, the investigator works to identify and narrow down likely suspects. Because of the serious nature of many of the crimes that a police investigator handles, he or she often tries to recover sufficient evidence to help a prosecutor to secure a verdict in court. In many larger police departments, it is normal for investigators to specialize in areas such as vehicular theft, cyber crime or homicides. Regardless of the specific assignments or crimes, however, many duties are the same; the investigator helps collect and analyze crime scene evidence, interviews witnesses and persons of interest, and documents all aspects of the case until an arrest is made.

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Police Investigator Tasks

  • Collect and analyze evidence, including prints and photographs.
  • Prepare and file documents, reports, and forms.
  • Investigate criminal cases, including interviewing witnesses and suspects.
  • Perform basic crime scene assessment.
  • Testify in court.

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Pay by Experience Level for Police Investigator

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


Those who have worked for fewer than five years take home a median salary of $50K, and workers with five to 10 years of experience report earning less ($47K) on average. Police Investigators see a median salary of $61K after reaching one to two decades on the job. Average wages for folks with more than 20 years of experience come out to around $66K.

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Experience Affects Police Investigator Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 23%

Experienced
up arrow 14%

National Average
$53,000

Entry-Level
up arrow 7%

Mid-Career
up arrow 12%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 8 votes.

Gender

Female
12 %
Male
88 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
2%
1-4 years
16%
5-9 years
22%
10-19 years
29%
20 years or more
31%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 93%
dental benefits
Dental: 75%
medical benefits
Vision: 71%
dental benefits
None: 7%
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