Homicide Detective Job Description & Career Outlook
The job of a homicide detective is to investigate deaths caused by overt criminal activities and deaths with unknown causes to rule out criminal activity. Homicide detectives are sworn law enforcement officers.
Responsibilities of a homicide detective include gathering evidence, interviewing witnesses, conducting background checks on victims and possible suspects, identifying the responsible party, preparing cases for court and assisting in the successful prosecution of offenders. Working conditions vary greatly depending on the nature of the current investigation. A homicide detective must be prepared to work under any conditions.
Homicide detectives are employed by local, state and federal law enforcement agencies throughout the United States. Depending on the size and geographic location of the agency, the detective’s jurisdiction may cover the entire agency’s geographical jurisdiction or a sector or portion of the area under that agency’s scope. The nature of the work can be very dangerous and stressful, so the detective must also be mentally and physically prepared for the tasks performed.
How to Become a Homicide Detective
The minimum education requirements to become a homicide detective are a high school diploma, law enforcement certification, and experience as a sworn law enforcement officer. Many agencies, however, require that homicide detectives have at least a two- or four-year degree in criminal justice, forensic science or a related field and experience as a sworn law enforcement officer.
Homicide Detective Salary
Average salary for a homicide detective is $60,000 per year depending on education, experience and agency demographics.
Homicide Detective Hiring & Career Outlook
According to the United States Department of Labor, the job outlook is favorable on all levels with higher competition for federal positions.
Online Homicide Detective and Criminal Investigation Related Degrees
- BS in Criminal Justice - Crime Scene Investigation
- BS in Criminal Justice - Law Enforcement
- MS in Criminal Justice - Law
American InterContinental University Online
- Bachelor's of Science in Criminal Justice - Law Enforcement
- Bachelor's of Science in Criminal Justice - Forensic Science
Grand Canyon University
- M.S. in Criminal Justice: Law Enforcement
- M.S. in Criminal Justice: Legal Studies
- B.S. in Justice Studies
- Forensic Science
Brandman University Online
- BA in Criminal Justice (Forensics)
- BA in Criminal Justice (Homeland Security Emphasis)
- BA in Criminal Justice
California University of Pennsylvania
- MA in Social Science (Applied Criminology)
- Master of Arts in Criminal Justice
Page Edited by Charles Sipe.