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Detectives and Criminal Investigators

Conduct investigations related to suspected violations of federal, state, or local laws to prevent or solve crimes.

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    Work Activities

    Work Activities

    • Check victims for signs of life, such as breathing and pulse.
    • Secure deceased body and obtain evidence from it, preventing bystanders from tampering with it prior to medical examiner's arrival.
    • Obtain facts or statements from complainants, witnesses, and accused persons and record interviews, using recording device.
    • Record progress of investigation, maintain informational files on suspects, and submit reports to commanding officer or magistrate to authorize warrants.
    • Prepare charges or responses to charges, or information for court cases, according to formalized procedures.
    • Preserve, process, and analyze items of evidence obtained from crime scenes and suspects, placing them in proper containers and destroying evidence no longer needed.
    • Obtain summary of incident from officer in charge at crime scene, taking care to avoid disturbing evidence.
    • Note, mark, and photograph location of objects found, such as footprints, tire tracks, bullets and bloodstains, and take measurements of the scene.
    • Prepare reports that detail investigation findings.
    • Examine records and governmental agency files to find identifying data about suspects.
    • Secure persons at scene, keeping witnesses from conversing or leaving the scene before investigators arrive.
    • Provide information to lab personnel concerning the source of an item of evidence and tests to be performed.
    • Obtain and verify evidence by interviewing and observing suspects and witnesses or by analyzing records.
    • Analyze completed police reports to determine what additional information and investigative work is needed.
    • Prepare and serve search and arrest warrants.
    • Question individuals or observe persons and establishments to confirm information given to patrol officers.
    • Identify case issues and evidence needed, based on analysis of charges, complaints, or allegations of law violations.
    • Participate or assist in raids and arrests.
    • Organize scene search, assigning specific tasks and areas of search to individual officers and obtaining adequate lighting as necessary.
    • Summon medical help for injured individuals and alert medical personnel to take statements from them.
    • Testify before grand juries concerning criminal activity investigations.
    • Notify command of situation and request assistance.
    • Block or rope off scene and check perimeter to ensure that entire scene is secured.
    • Search for and collect evidence, such as fingerprints, using investigative equipment.
    • Notify, or request notification of, medical examiner or district attorney representative.
    • Determine scope, timing, and direction of investigations.
    • Maintain surveillance of establishments to obtain identifying information on suspects.
    • Collaborate with other offices and agencies to exchange information and coordinate activities.
    • Perform undercover assignments and maintain surveillance, including monitoring authorized wiretaps.
    • Examine records to locate links in chains of evidence or information.


    • Active Listening

      Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

    • Critical Thinking

      Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions, or approaches to problems.

    • Speaking

      Talking to others to convey information effectively.


    Applied Math
    Workplace Documents
    Graphic Literacy


    • Inductive Reasoning

      The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).

    • Deductive Reasoning

      The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.

    • Oral Comprehension

      The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.


    • Law and Government

      Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.

    • Public Safety and Security

      Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

    • Customer and Personal Service

      Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.

    Career Video

    Additional videos and more information available on CareerOneStop

    Ohio Employment Trends

    • Currently Employed 1,980
    • Yearly Projected Openings 130

    Typical Education


    Enterprising: People interested in this work like activities that include leading, making decisions, and business.They do well at jobs that need:
    • Integrity
    • Self Control
    • Stress Tolerance
    • Dependability
    • Attention to Detail
    • Cooperation


    • Surveillance video or audio recorders
    • Handguns
    • Handcuffs
    • Footprint lifters
    • Biological evidence collection kits


    • Office suite software
    • Graphics or photo imaging software
    • Geographic information system
    • Electronic mail software
    • Data base user interface and query software


    • InDemand occupations are considered a priority by the state of Ohio.

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    Workforce Supply Tool

    Workforce Supply Tool

    The Workforce Supply Tool provides statistics for the occupations in highest demand throughout Ohio.

    You can view statewide statistics as well as more region specific information.

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