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Career and Education Opportunities for Police Officers in South Dakota

South Dakota has a population of 812,383, which has grown by 7.62% in the last 10 years. Nicknamed the "Mount Rushmore State," its capital is Pierre, though its biggest city is Sioux Falls.

There are currently 250 working police officers in South Dakota; this should grow by 7% to 260 working police officers in the state by 2016. This is not quite as good as the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for police officers are expected to grow by about 16.6%. Police officers generally conduct investigations to prevent crimes or solve criminal cases.

A person working as a police officer can expect to earn about $23 per hour or $49,110 annually on average in South Dakota and about $29 per hour or $60,910 yearly on average in the U.S. as a whole. Earnings for police officers are better than earnings in the general category of Police and Security in South Dakota and better than general Police and Security category earnings nationally. Jobs in this field include: crime scene investigator, detective supervisor, and fugitive detective.

In 2008, there were a total of 566,490 jobs in South Dakota. The average annual income was $38,644 in 2008, up from $36,428 the preceding year. The unemployment rate in South Dakota was 4.8% in 2009, which has grown by 1.7% since the previous year. Roughly 21.5% of South Dakota residents have college degrees, which is lower than the national average.

The top industries in South Dakota include nonstore retailers, gasoline stations with convenience stores, and sign manufacturing. Notable tourist attractions include the Great Plains Zoo & Delbridge Muum of Natural Hstry, the Washington Pavilion of Arts and Science, and the Pettigrew Home & Museum.

CITIES WITH Police Officer OPPORTUNITIES IN South Dakota


JOB DESCRIPTION: Police Officer

In general, police officers conduct investigations to prevent crimes or solve criminal cases.

Every day, police officers are expected to be able to evaluate problems as they arise. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they think through problems and come up with general rules.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in South Dakota include:

  • Chief of Police. Supervise and coordinate activities of members of police force.
  • Correctional Officer. Guard inmates in penal or rehabilitative institution in accordance with established regulations and procedures. May guard prisoners in transit between jail, courtroom, or other point. Includes deputy sheriffs and police who spend the majority of their time guarding prisoners in correctional institutions.
  • 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 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.
  • Private Investigator. Detect occurrences of unlawful acts or infractions of rules in private establishment, or seek, examine, and compile information for client.
  • 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.

LOCATION INFORMATION: South Dakota

South Dakota
South Dakota photo by Dean Franklin

South Dakota has a population of 812,383, which has grown by 7.62% in the last 10 years. Nicknamed the "Mount Rushmore State," its capital is Pierre, though its most populous city is Sioux Falls. In 2008, there were a total of 566,490 jobs in South Dakota. The average annual income was $38,644 in 2008, up from $36,428 the previous year. The unemployment rate in South Dakota was 4.8% in 2009, which has grown by 1.7% since the previous year. Roughly 21.5% of South Dakota residents have college degrees, which is lower than the national average.

The top industries in South Dakota include nonstore retailers, gasoline stations with convenience stores, and sign manufacturing. Notable tourist attractions include the Pettigrew Home & Museum, the Sioux Falls City, and the Old Courthouse Museum.