How to Become a Criminal Investigator with the Dallas
Police Department

Dallas, Texas, one of the largest cities in the United States, has seen a dramatic drop in crime in the last 10 years thanks in part to the work of the dedicated of detectives that serve the Dallas Police Department.

Still, according to a report published by the FBI there were 8,380 violent crimes reported in the city in 2012 alone.

Detectives with the Dallas Police Department’s North Central, Central, Southwest, Southeast, and South Central Investigative Teams are responsible for investigating violent crimes and other felonies that take place in their respective precincts.

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Earning a Detective Shield with the Dallas Police Department

The first step to becoming a detective with the Dallas Police Department is to spend at least three years as a police officer. While working on patrol, offices are expected to demonstrate stellar performance and uphold the highest professional standards in order to be eligible for promotion to detective positions.

Education and Experience Requirements – According to the Dallas Police Department, police officer applicants that meet the minimum age requirement (19 ½) must have at least 60 semester hours of coursework with a minimum 2.0 GPA.

Applicants that are between 21-44 years of age must have at least 45 hours of college coursework with a 2.0 GPA at minimum.

Finishing an associate’s or a bachelor’s degree in a law enforcement-related major may prove particularly helpful to a peace officer that aspires to be promoted to a detective position.

The college requirement may be waived for applicants with three or more years of active duty service in a branch of the United States Armed Forces and an honorable discharge.

Physical Fitness Testing – Qualified applicants must be able to:

  • Run 1.5 miles within 19.09 minutes
  • Bench press 56 percent of their own body weight
  • Complete 14 sit-ups in one minute
  • Complete four pushups per minute
  • Complete a 300-meter run in 110 seconds
  • Execute a vertical jump of 6.5 inches
  • Perform the Illinois Shuttle Run in 24.9 seconds

Disqualifying Factors – Applicants will not be considered if any of the following apply:

  • Any felony or Class A misdemeanor convictions
  • A Class B misdemeanor conviction in the past 10 years
  • Pending traffic citations or course cases
  • Three or more convictions of hazardous traffic violations within the last two years
  • Worse than 20/100 vision in any eye; vision that cannot be corrected to 20/20

Criminal Investigators Within the Dallas Police Department

The Dallas Police Department has department-wide teams, as well as regional precincts with independent specialty units in which detectives and other criminal investigators work. At the Department level, detectives serve in the following units:

  • Auto Theft
  • Crimes Against Persons
  • Computer Crime Team
  • Criminal Intelligence Unit
  • Financial Investigations
  • Narcotics

Detectives are also found in these precinct-level units:

  • North Central – Investigative Team
  • Central – Investigative Team
  • Southwest – Investigation Unit
  • Southeast – Investigative Team
  • South Central – Investigative Team

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