How to Become a Criminal Investigator With the Grand Forks
Police Department

The Grand Forks Police Department is the third-largest agency of its kind in the state. In 2012 it investigated 146 violent crimes, doing this specifically with the expertise of its Criminal Investigations Bureau. On average, the CIB devotes its specialized detectives to investigate approximately 350 important cases every year. CIB detectives work on a caseload that is divided into several categories:

  • Narcotics task force
  • Personal crimes
  • Property crimes
  • Stolen goods
  • Juvenile crime
  • Child abuse and welfare
  • Domestic violence
  • Licensing and permits

Each year the Grand Forks PD hires an average of slightly more than six new officers. The detective requirements to become a criminal investigator with the Grand Forks Police Department start with meeting the basic qualifications for employment: at least 19 years of age with a valid driver’s license and high school education.

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Educational Qualification for Detective Jobs with the Grand Forks Police Department

Police officers who have completed their first year of probation may be assigned to work with the Criminal Investigations Bureau. As an officer moves up in rank, he or she can gain greater leadership and autonomy within the Bureau.

One of the first important qualifications to consider for those wanting to become a detective with the Grand Forks PD is education. Applicants for entry-level officer positions must have either two years of college education in any subject with at least a C grade average or have already completed a basic law enforcement training academy. To advance further through the ranks, the following education is required:

  • Corporal – associate’s degree plus five years of police experience
  • Sergeant – associate’s degree, five years of police experience, and an interview assessment
  • Lieutenant – bachelor’s degree and two years of Sergeant experience
  • Captain – bachelor’s degree and one year as a Lieutenant

Applicants who are considering long-term investigative careers are well-advised to obtain either an associate’s degree or bachelor’s degree. As a demonstration of the importance the Grand Forks PD places on college education, it offers a tuition reimbursement program for its officers of up to 40 percent per class. Up to eight hours of classes a week can also count for police duty time on the clock. While the police department accepts college education in any subject as qualifying, the following fields are particularly relevant for those pursuing criminal investigator jobs:

  • Forensic Science
  • Law Enforcement
  • Crime Scene Investigation
  • Criminal Justice
  • Law

Detective Training with the Grand Forks Police Department

Introductory training starts with a new recruit basic training program that lasts approximately 12 weeks. This is followed by a two-week orientation program and then a minimum of 16 weeks in the Field Training and Evaluation Program. Upon graduation from the basic training academy, new recruits will be on probation for approximately one year.

Prospective criminal investigators are advised to take advantage of detective training offered through the Grand Forks PD while they are completing their probationary period. In-service training is offered every Wednesday on a range of topics, and each year officers receive an average of 100 hours of additional training. Advanced criminal investigator training is part of this, including:

  • Crime reconstruction
  • Crime scene processing
  • Homicide investigations
  • Advances in forensic technology
  • Conducting undercover investigations
  • Victim, suspect, and witness interviewing techniques

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