First 48 Detectives Where Are They Now?

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The First 48 is a riveting documentary series that follows homicide detectives during the critical first 48 hours of murder investigations. Since its inception in 2004, the show has given viewers a raw and unfiltered look at the challenges and triumphs of detectives as they race against time to solve cases. Over the years, many detectives have become familiar faces to fans, and their personal stories have become as compelling as the cases they work on. In this article, we’ll explore where some of the most memorable First 48 detectives are now, delving into their careers, personal lives, and the impact the show has had on them.

Introduction to The First 48

The First 48 is an American documentary television series on A&E. It has been on the air for over a decade and has featured numerous homicide detectives from various cities across the United States. The show’s title refers to the crucial first 48 hours after a homicide, during which detectives believe they have the best chance of solving the case before leads grow cold. The series has been praised for its gritty realism and in-depth look at the investigative process.

Impact of The First 48 on Detectives

Before we delve into where these detectives are now, it’s important to understand the impact that The First 48 has had on their careers. The show has brought unprecedented attention to the work of homicide detectives, highlighting both the successes and the emotional toll of their job. For some detectives, the show has led to public recognition and opportunities for career advancement. For others, the exposure has brought challenges, including dealing with the fame that comes from being on a national television show.

Notable First 48 Detectives

Over the years, many detectives have left a lasting impression on viewers. Detectives like Joe Schillaci, Caroline Mason, and Ken Penrod have become almost as integral to the show’s identity as the investigations themselves. Each detective brought their unique style and approach to the job, endearing them to fans and making their updates all the more interesting.

Where Are They Now: A Look at Former First 48 Detectives

Fans often wonder what happened to their favorite detectives after they left the show. Some have retired, others have moved on to different departments or roles within law enforcement, and a few have even transitioned into new careers entirely.

Joe Schillaci

Joe Schillaci, a fan favorite known for his empathetic approach to victims’ families, retired from the Miami Police Department. He has since worked as a motivational speaker and consultant, sharing his experiences and insights on law enforcement and leadership.

Caroline Mason

Lieutenant Caroline Mason, with her distinctive style and no-nonsense attitude, continues to serve in the Memphis Police Department. She has been promoted and remains a role model for many women in law enforcement.

Ken Penrod

Ken Penrod, a long-time detective with the Miami Police Department, retired after a storied career. Post-retirement, he has kept a low profile, enjoying his time away from the spotlight.

Advancements and Promotions

Many detectives from The First 48 have seen their careers flourish after appearing on the show. Some have received promotions within their departments, while others have been sought after for their expertise in high-profile cases or training new detectives.

Detective Mireles

Detective Mireles, known for his dedication and tenacity, was promoted to Sergeant and continues to serve in his department, taking on new responsibilities and mentoring younger officers.

Detective Rick Duggan

Rick Duggan, who worked for the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, retired but has since taken up teaching, passing on his knowledge to the next generation of law enforcement professionals.

Life After The First 48

Life after The First 48 has been varied for the detectives featured on the show. While some have remained in the public eye, others have chosen to step back and enjoy a quieter life.

Public Speaking and Consultancy

Several former detectives have taken up public speaking, sharing their experiences at conferences, schools, and events. They also work as consultants for law enforcement agencies, offering their expertise on complex cases.

Private Sector Careers

A few detectives have transitioned into careers in the private sector, using their investigative skills in security, private investigation, or corporate consulting roles.

Continued Dedication to Law Enforcement

Despite the changes in their careers, one constant remains: the dedication that these detectives have to law enforcement and their communities. Many continue to advocate for victims and work on unsolved cases, even in retirement.

Challenges Faced by First 48 Detectives

The exposure from The First 48 has not been without its challenges. Detectives have had to balance the demands of their job with the added pressure of being in the public eye. Some have faced criticism for their actions on the show, while others have had to deal with the emotional impact of reliving difficult cases through repeated airings.

Summary Table: First 48 Detectives Where Are They Now?

DetectorStatusCurrent Role
Joe SchillaciRetiredMotivational Speaker/Consultant
Caroline MasonActiveLieutenant, Memphis PD
Ken PenrodRetiredPrivate Life
Detector MirelesActiveSergeant
Rick DugganRetiredTeacher/Instructor

FAQs: First 48 Detectives Where Are They Now?

  • Are any First 48 detectives still active in law enforcement? Yes, several detectives from the show are still active in law enforcement, some in their original departments and others in new roles or locations.
  • Has the show led to any negative consequences for the detectives featured? While the show has brought fame and recognition, it has also led to some challenges, including public scrutiny and the emotional toll of high-profile cases.
  • Do detectives from The First 48 collaborate with each other? While not common, there have been instances where detectives from different episodes or cities have collaborated on cases or shared insights.
  • Have any First 48 detectives written books or made other media appearances? Some detectives have written books or appeared in other media to discuss their experiences or provide expert commentary on true crime cases.
  • What do retired First 48 detectives do now? Retired detectives from the show have pursued a variety of interests, including public speaking, teaching, private investigation, or simply enjoying retirement.


The First 48 has given viewers an unprecedented look into the world of homicide investigations, and the detectives featured have become integral to the show’s success. As we’ve seen, life after The First 48 has taken these detectives in many different directions. Some continue to serve their communities in law enforcement, while others have retired or moved into new careers. Their dedication to justice and the impact they’ve had on the field of law enforcement will not be forgotten. Whether they’re still on the force or enjoying retirement, the legacy of these First 48 detectives continues to resonate with fans and colleagues alike.

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