How to Become a Criminal Investigator with the McAllen
Police Department

Being near the US – Mexico border and only about 70 miles from the Gulf of Mexico, McAllen deals with a considerable amount of crime for a city it’s size.

In 2012, the McAllen Police Department received 166 violent crime reports, many of which were investigated by the detectives that serve the department’s Criminal investigations Division.

That year, one resident was murdered in the city and three people reported being raped. The number of robbery reports the Department received was 56, while 106 aggravated assaults were reported.

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Qualifying to Become a Detective with the McAllen Police Department

A career as a detective with the McAllen Police Department starts by spending time working as a patrol officer.

Interested parties must submit two separate applications for employment, one with the city of McAllen and the other specifically geared for police work with the McAllen PD.

The application process includes a written personal statement, requires contact information for five personal and professional references, and asks questions about not only behavior as an adult, but also behavior as a juvenile including any juvenile criminal convictions.

The McAllen Police Department has the following requirements in place:

  • Have an active driver’s license with a good driving record
  • Have no prior felony convictions (In a number of situations, applicants that have misdemeanor convictions that are over 10 years old might still be eligible to enter into the police academy)
  • Completion of medical and psychological testing, including a physical fitness test and polygraph test
  • Pass a written civil service exam

All successful applicants must complete a 30-day police academy and may also be required to complete McAllen-specific field training, depending upon their level of experience.

All police officers, whether or not they are detectives, must earn a basic peace officer license through the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Education after completing McAllen’s required police academy.

Doing an exceptional job and earning a minimum of a two-year college degree in subjects related to criminal investigations are vital steps to becoming a detective in McAllen.

McAllen Police Department Criminal Investigations Division Units

Detectives serving the McAllen Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division (CID) are assigned to one of the following specialty units:

  • Crimes Against Persons
  • Crime Scene Investigation (CSI)
  • Narcotics
  • Property and Evidence Unit
  • Special Investigations Unit

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