Guns, Gams & Gumshoes

A blog for PIs and writers/readers of the PI genre

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    A Guide for Writing Fictional Sleuths from a Couple of Real-Life Sleuths

    "How to Write a Dick is the best work of its kind I’ve ever come across because it covers the whole spectrum in an entertaining style that will appeal to layman and lawmen alike."

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Answering Writer’s Question: What’s the Difference Between FBI agents and PIs?

Posted by Writing PIs on April 20, 2011

Writer’s Question: How do FBI agents and PI’s differ? Do they fall under the same code of conduct and ethics, or are they two different ball games, so to speak?

Answer: FBI agents are government employees as well as law enforcement agents and they must abide by each rule protecting constitutional rights and they must follow government protocol.  FBI agents are publicly funded and have tremendous technical and forensic support.  Private investigators do not have to protect constitutional rights and they can choose to process evidence or fill out expense reports as they choose, unlike FBI agents.  Of course, PIs cannot carry weapons or conduct wire taps in the same way FBI agents do.  On the other hand, PIs are bound by financial concerns and technology comes at a great price.  In essence, while government agents have to follow certain rules, they have tremendous resources.

Have a great week, Writing PIs


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