How to Become a Criminal Investigator with the Hialeah
Police Department

Hialeah, the sixth most populous city in Florida, is part of the Greater Miami Metropolitan Area. The 355 sworn officers and criminal investigators of the Hialeah Police Department work tirelessly to protect the 224,669 residents of the city.

Thanks to their diligence, the overall crime rate has been reduced from 508.3 in 2000 to 256.6 in 2012, which is lower than the national average of 301.1. In addition, Hialeah’s 2012 murder rate was only four per 100,000 people.

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Becoming a Detective with the Hialeah Police Department

The Criminal Investigative Division is one of three divisions of the Hialeah Police Department. Under the leadership of Major Ralph Nazario, criminal investigators handle all major crimes against persons, property or within families. There are also two special units that investigate narcotics trafficking and gangs. These two units often require investigators to work undercover.

The average annual salary of criminal investigators in Hialeah is $57,000 to $61,000.

Education and Experience Requirements – Police officer jobs for new recruits are highly competitive. Candidates with at least an associate’s degree and/or some law enforcement, military or security experience may have a significant advantage.

Post-secondary education may also help with the written test that all applicants must take as part of the screening process, which requires a certain level of knowledge about state statutes and the criminal justice system.

Satisfying the Basic Requirements – The other requirements for eligibility include:

  • U.S. citizen at least 19 years old
  • Valid driver’s license
  • Good oral and written communication
  • Physically fit
  • Healthy, including 20/100 in each eye uncorrected, 20/20 and 20/40 corrected
  • Bilingual English-Spanish – Hialeah is a Spanish speaking community that is 75 percent Cuban
  • Good character
  • Emotionally stable
  • Knowledge of area geography
  • Able to use firearms/knowledge of their care
  • Able to quickly analyze a situation

*The physical agility test combines such physical functions as stretching, bending, climbing, running, dragging, etc., that are needed on the job.

How to Apply – Download and complete the application form found at the Hialeah police department employment website. Complete the application and take it, along with copies of all of the other required documents (school records, driver’s license, birth certificate, social security card, etc.) to the City of Hialeah Human Resources Department, Third Floor, 501 Palm Ave. in Hialeah. Telephone: 305-883-8057.

Being Hired on with the Hialeah Police Department

The three steps in the hiring process are:

  • Written general knowledge test
  • Physical agility test*
  • Personal interview
  • Job offer

Newly hired aspiring detectives must attend an orientation session and spend several full-time weeks at the Standards and Training Department, which is housed in a separate building from police headquarters. The facility holds classrooms, a 10-position indoor firing range and a fully equipped gym. Classroom studies include courses in such subjects as:

  • Domestic violence
  • Juvenile procedures
  • Human diversity
  • Defense tactics
  • Department procedures
  • Terrorism
  • Weapons of Mass Destruction
  • Incident command
  • Rapid action tactics for school shootings

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