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US Police Departments

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that new job openings within the field of criminal justice will increase by 15% over the next decade. This translates to thousands of new positions becoming available to job seekers. Professions in criminal justice, including administration, law enforcement, and legal assisting, offer salaries ranging from $35,000 to $80,000 a year. Many of these jobs require criminal justice coursework, as well as on-the-job training. No matter what career you choose to pursue in criminal justice, you'll have to pass a criminal history check. Most states have laws against hiring criminal justice professionals who have been convicted of felonies. A credit check is often the next component of the background check, and may include your employment history, asking basic questions about what kind of employee you were, and why you left or resigned. Sometimes, agencies will conduct a neighborhood check and home visit. The best way to get through the process is to be open, honest and upfront with your background investigator.

Law Enforcement

Always in demand, police jobs are listed by city or federal agency. Police officers are the most visible members of the criminal justice profession. Patrol officers issue traffic citations, investigate minor crimes and traffic crashes and assist members of the public while they patrol the streets of their community. While the rank of patrol officer is the entry level for police professionals, extensive training and certification is required to wear a badge. Many departments will offer to sponsor well-qualified candidates to gain the necessary training through their state or local police academy. The median national salary for patrol officers is $62,000. presents a wealth of criminal justice and legal information. criminal justice job listings. criminal justice careers.

Criminal justice instructor jobs can be found on

Police detectives investigate crimes. They also search for and apprehend criminals. Unlike patrol officers, detectives spend their days following up on crimes that have already been committed, as opposed to actively patrolling. In 2008, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that there were approximately 112,200 detectives and criminal investigators employed in the United States. Detectives need to be able to take control of a crime scene and direct other officers at the scene. When first called out to investigate a case, a criminal investigator can expect to work long hours. It is imperative to gather as much fresh evidence as possible and to track every fresh lead as soon as is practical. As a result, it is not uncommon to work up to 20 hours straight, after initially responding to a crime scene.

DepartmentPopulationOfficersPer 1,000
New York City Police Dept8,220,19635,2164.28
Chicago Police Dept2,824,43413,3364.72
Los Angeles Police Dept3,870,4879,5042.46
Philadelphia Police Dept1,435,5336,7784.72
Houston Police Dept2,169,5444,8922.25
DC Metro Police Dept588,2923,9136.65
Phoenix Police Dept1,541,6983,2312.1
Dallas Police Dept1,239,1043,1222.52
Miami-Dade Police Dept1,082,3953,1202.88
Detroit Police Dept860,9713,0493.54
Baltimore Police Dept624,2372,9524.73
Suffolk County Police Dept1,308,7502,6442.02
Nassau County Police Dept1,030,4952,6002.52
Las Vegas Metro Police Dept1,341,1562,3901.78
San Francisco Police Dept733,7992,3033.14
Boston Police Dept591,8552,1693.66
Memphis Police Dept669,2642,0623.08
Milwaukee Police Dept572,9381,9603.42
San Diego Police Dept1,261,1961,9221.52
Honolulu Police Dept905,9031,9112.11
Baltimore Police Dept785,5671,8882.4
Columbus Police Dept735,9811,8292.49
San Antonio Police Dept1,316,8821,7951.36
Atlanta Police Dept497,2901,7013.42
Jacksonville Sheriffs Office797,3501,6292.04
Indianapolis Metro Police Dept797,2681,6072.02
Cleveland Police Dept439,8881,5843.6
Denver Police Dept573,3871,5232.66
Prince George Police Dept647,7011,5222.35
Charlotte Police Dept733,2911,4812.02
Fairfax County Police Dept976,3921,4271.46
New Orleans Police Dept220,6141,4256.46
Austin Police Dept716,8171,4151.97
Fort Worth Police Dept670,6931,4122.11
Kansas City Police Dept447,7251,3933.11
San Jose Police Dept934,5531,3861.48
St Louis Police Dept348,1971,3483.87
Seattle Police Dept585,1181,2772.18
Newark Police Dept280,1581,2294.39
Montgomery Police Dept911,5281,1991.32
Louisville Metro Police Dept624,0301,1841.9
Nashville Police Dept564,1691,1802.09
El Paso Police Dept616,0291,0951.78
Cincinnati Police Dept332,3881,0623.2
Miami Police Dept410,2521,0542.57
Tucson Police Dept523,2991,0522.01
Oklahoma City Police Dept542,1999991.84
Tampa Police Dept337,2209922.94
Long Beach Police Dept473,9599722.05
Albuquerque Police Dept513,1249631.88

The median annual income for detectives and criminal investigators is around $78,000. Salaries depend greatly on location and which agency you work for, as well as the number of years of service. It is important to realize that police detectives are not entry-level workers. You must go through an rigorous testing, an extensive review process, and have a minimum of two years of experience as a police officer first. The website provides useful information on federal police careers, trooper careers, and correctional officer jobs. It also provides information on law enforcement interviewing and federal career testing. The following enforcement agencies each have their own application process, and offer successful candidates varied career development pathways.

FBI website
CIA Jobs
NSA Careers
DEA Jobs
US Marshals
Bureau of Prisons

Criminal Justice Job Descriptions

ATF Agent
CIA Agent
Computer Forensics
Crime Scene Investigator
Criminal Profiler
FBI Agent
Fingerprint Analyst
Police Detective
Police Officer
State Trooper
US Marshal

US Department of Homeland Security

US Department of Homeland Security

The Department of Homeland Security is charged with protecting the American people, infrastructure and resources. The third largest Cabinet department, DHS was established by the Homeland Security Act. The new department consolidated 22 executive branch agencies, including the U.S. Customs Service, the U.S. Coast Guard, the U.S. Secret Service, the Transportation Security Administration, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. DHS employs 216,000 people in its mission to patrol borders, protect travelers and our transportation infrastructure, enforce immigration laws, and respond to disasters and emergencies. The agency also promotes preparedness and emergency prevention among citizens. Policy is coordinated by the Homeland Security Council at the White House, in cooperation with other defense and intelligence agencies, and led by the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security.

US Department of Justice

US Department of Justice

The Department of Justice is committed to providing employment and professional development. To assist employment efforts, the Department provides all DOJ agencies with the ability to attract, employ, and retain talented individuals. These activities reflect the unique employment needs of new college graduates, and the appropriate tools and strategies that should be utilized in recruitment, hiring, and development. In addition to posting job vacancies on DOJ at USAJobs, some Justice Department agencies list career opportunities on their own websites.

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