Career and Education Opportunities for Private Investigators in Portland, Maine
Many educational and employment opportunities exist for private investigators in the Portland, Maine area. There are currently 170 working private investigators in Maine; this should grow 9% to about 180 working private investigators in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for private investigators are expected to grow by about 22.0%. Private investigators generally detect occurrences of unlawful acts or infractions of rules in private establishment, or seek, examine, and compile information for client.
Private investigators earn approximately $16 per hour or $35,000 annually on average in Maine. Nationally they average about $20 hourly or $41,760 annually. Compared with people working in the overall category of Police and Security, people working as private investigators in Maine earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Police and Security nationally. Private investigators work in a variety of jobs, including: loss prevention agent, district agent, and house officer.
There is one school within twenty-five miles of Portland where you can study to be a private investigator, among twenty-three schools of higher education total in the Portland area. Given that the most common education level for private investigators is an Associate's, or other 2-year degree, you can expect to spend about two years training to become a private investigator if you already have a high school diploma.
CAREER DESCRIPTION: Private Investigator
In general, private investigators detect occurrences of unlawful acts or infractions of rules in private establishment, or seek, examine, and compile information for client.
Private investigators write reports and case summaries to document investigations. They also perform background investigations of individuals. Equally important, private investigators have to perform private investigations on a paid basis. They are often called upon to search computer databases, credit reports, public records, tax and legal filings, and other resources in order to compile data for investigations. They are expected to testify at hearings and court trials to present evidence. Finally, private investigators obtain and analyze data on suspects and disturbances so as to solve cases, to pinpoint criminal activity, and to gather data for court cases.
Every day, private investigators are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings. It is also important that they read and understand documents and reports.
It is important for private investigators to observe and document efforts of individuals in order to uncover unlawful acts or to obtain evidence for cases, using binoculars and still or video cameras. They are often called upon to expose fraudulent insurance claims or stolen funds. They also perform undercover operations such as evaluating the performance and honesty of employees by posing as customers or employees. They are sometimes expected to alert appropriate staff to suspects' locations. Somewhat less frequently, private investigators are also expected to question persons to obtain evidence for cases of divorce or missing persons, or data related to individuals' character or financial status.
They also have to be able to investigate companies' financial standings or locate funds stolen by embezzlers, using accounting skills And finally, they sometimes have to track industrial or commercial properties to enforce conformance to establishment rules, and to safeguard people or property.
Like many other jobs, private investigators must have exceptional integrity and be reliable.
Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Portland include:
- Bailiff. Maintain order in courts of law.
- Chief of Police. Supervise and coordinate activities of members of police force.
- Criminal Investigator. Investigate alleged or suspected criminal violations of Federal, state, or local laws to determine if evidence is sufficient to recommend prosecution.
- Customs Inspector. Investigate and inspect persons, common carriers, and merchandise, arriving in or departing from the United States or between states to detect violations of immigration and customs laws and regulations.
- Fire Code Inspector. Inspect buildings and equipment to detect fire hazards and enforce state and local regulations.
- Fire Inspector. Conduct investigations to determine causes of fires and explosions.
- Police Officer. Conduct investigations to prevent crimes or solve criminal cases.
- Police Records Officer. Collect evidence at crime scenes, classify and identify fingerprints, and photograph evidence for use in criminal and civil cases.
- Policeman. Patrol assigned areas to enforce laws and ordinances, regulate traffic, and arrest violators.
- Sheriff. Enforce law and order in rural or unincorporated districts or serve legal processes of courts. May patrol courthouse, guard court or grand jury, or escort defendants.
- Transportation Security Officer. Inspect baggage or cargo and screen passengers to detect and prevent potentially dangerous objects from being transported into secure areas or onto aircraft.
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Private Investigator Training
Southern Maine Community College - South Portland, ME
Southern Maine Community College, 2 Fort Road, South Portland, ME 04106-1698. Southern Maine Community College is a medium sized college located in South Portland, Maine. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 5,654 students and an admission rate of 68%. Southern Maine Community College has an associate's degree program in Criminal Justice/Police Science which graduated thirty-two students in 2008.
Certified Fraud Examiner: The ACFE established and administers the Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) designation.
For more information, see the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners website.
Certified Confidentiality Officer: Professional certification validates your training and experience in your present career.
For more information, see the Business Espionage Controls and Countermeasures Association website.
Computer Forensics: The primary goals we have for our certification programs are to both assist law enforcement and organizations requiring highly skilled investigators in the identification of highly skilled individuals, and to promote the training and education efforts within the computer investigation, computer forensic and computer security industries.
For more information, see the Cyber Enforcement Resources Incorporated website.
Certified Protection Officer: The CPO program is designed for protection professionals intent on.
For more information, see the International Foundation for Protection Officers website.
Certified Legal Investigator: The National Association of Legal Investigators, Inc.
For more information, see the National Association of Legal Investigators website.
Licensing agency: Department of Public Safety
Address: Office of the Commissioner, 42 State House Station, Augusta, ME 04333-0042
Phone: (207) 287-3801
Website: Department of Public Safety Office of the Commissioner
LOCATION INFORMATION: Portland, Maine
Portland is situated in Cumberland County, Maine. It has a population of over 62,561, which has shrunk by 2.6% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Portland, 102, is above the national average. New single-family homes in Portland are priced at $164,700 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, twenty-three new homes were built in Portland, down from thirty-two the previous year.
The three most popular industries for women in Portland are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, accommodation and food services, and construction. The average commute to work is about 19 minutes. More than 36.4% of Portland residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 13.0%, is higher than the state average.
The unemployment rate in Portland is 6.3%, which is less than Maine's average of 7.6%. About 14.1% of Portland's residents are below the poverty line, which is worse than the state average.
The percentage of Portland residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 40.4%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Mariners Church, Swedenborgian Church and Stroudwater Christian Church are among the churches located in Portland. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the United Church of Christ and the United Methodist Church.
Portland is home to the Cumberland Wharf and the Browns Wharf as well as Longfellow Square and Hadlock Field. Shopping centers in the area include Mill Creek Shopping Center, Monument Square Shopping Center and Portland East Shopping Center. Visitors to Portland can choose from Motel 6, Fairfield Inn Portland Airport and Ramada Limited Portland for temporary stays in the area.