Special Investigators are an important part of a close knit unit of caseworkers, who work with them as a team to protect children, including those children whose cases are high-profile or high-risk. They have a specialized set of skills in order to do their job.
A Special Investigator job is very challenging and can be stressful at times – but there are few jobs that offer more opportunities to learn new things about families, your community, and yourself.
What kinds of things will I be doing?
- Training and consulting with staff on forensic interview skills and techniques.
- Providing feedback to staff on effective investigation techniques from a law enforcement perspective.
- Investigating cases that are high profile or high-risk, or require joint investigation with law enforcement due to alleged criminal acts.
- Going with caseworkers on investigations, and helping other caseworkers with crisis situations.
- Providing information on criminal statutes and law enforcement procedures.
- Guarding against verbal abuse by clients that are angry and do not want you in their lives.
- Talking about sexual exploitation of children in a direct and objective manner.
- Interacting objectively with “caretakers” who have abused children in their care.
- Following the directions of the courts and agency.
- Educating clients how to change behavior that led to child abuse.
- Be willing to remove a child from a dangerous situation.
- Documenting casework activity.
- Working under constant time pressure, prioritize efforts, juggle multiple cases, and work flexible work hours.
- Staying objective and empathic while dealing with families living in stressful and crisis situations.
What are the job qualifications?
- Graduation from an accredited four-year college or university with major coursework in criminal justice, criminology, sociology, social work
- Two years full time law enforcement experience with primary duties involving the use of forensic investigation methods. Examples of desired forensic investigation skills are: experience interviewing perpetrators, children and witnesses, crime scene analysis including photographic and written documentation, experience obtaining credible and reliable victim, witness and suspect statements and report writing.
What would my salary be?
The starting salary for a Special Investigator is $4,748.95.
In addition to salary, CPS Special Investigators also receive an additional stipend of $416 per month. An employee is eligible for the stipend after 120 days of employment. You must remain in an Investigations position to continue to receive the stipend. In addition to salary, the State of Texas offers a very competitive benefits package including 100% medical coverage and a generous retirement plan.
Will I get trained on what to do?
Yes! You will have lots of great training before beginning your job. Though you will be doing visits to clients on your own you will have ongoing support from your co-workers and supervisor any time you need it.