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How Much Can You Earn in a Criminal Justice Career? Criminal justice jobs are necessary commodities in today’s job market.

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Legal, law enforcement, criminal investigation, forensics, and corrections jobs are hot commodities in today’s job market, and a college degree or diploma will certainly give you a great advantage over non-college graduates. And criminal justice salaries usually go up when you have a college degree.

Whether you’re looking for a job as a forensic scientist, police officer, private investigator, a legal secretary, or another criminal justice job, increasing your education will increase your salary.

Here are median annual criminal justice salary ranges in the U.S. for a variety of criminal justice jobs (from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics 2020 Occupational Employment Statistics).

Job TitleMedian Annual Salary
Paralegal$52,920
Legal Secretary$40,990
Lawyer$126,930
Mediator$66,130
Legal Nurse Consultant$75,330
Court Reporter$64,990

Salaries for Law Enforcement Agents

Job TitleMedian Annual Salary
Police Officer$65,540
Police First-Line Supervisor$92,970
Transit and Railroad Police$72,580
Detective$86,940
Security Guard$31,050
Criminologist$86,940

Salaries for Forensics

Job TitleMedian Annual Salary
Forensic Science Technician$60,590
Criminal Investigator$86,940
Forensic Psychologist$82,180

Corrections Salaries

Job TitleMedian Annual Salary
Corrections Officer$47,410
Bailiff$48,000
Treatment Specialists/Probation Officer$55,560

Sources: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment Statistics, 2020.

The salary information listed is based on a national average, unless noted. Actual salaries may vary greatly based on specialization within the field, location, years of experience and a variety of other factors. National long-term projections of employment growth may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions, and do not guarantee actual job growth.