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Air Force Office of Special Investigations - Eyes of the Eagle

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Sonya Croston
  • 36th Wing Public Affairs
ANDERSEN AIR FORCE BASE, Guam - As one of the second-most sought out career fields in the Air Force, the Office of Special Investigations (OSI) employs more than 3,000 active duty, Reserve and civilian personnel.

According to their factsheet, AFOSI provides professional investigative service to commanders of all Air Force activities. AFOSI identifies, investigates and neutralizes criminal, terrorist and espionage threats to Air Force and Department of Defense personnel and resources. 

AFOSI was founded in August 1948, and has been the Air Force's major investigative service since. 

The organization's primary focus lies within criminal investigations and counterintelligence services. 

"We get a lot of law enforcement members who apply for the job because they want to work more closely with the investigative side of the career," said Special Agent Reid Legg, AFOSI Det. 602. 

There are a number of specialties available to agents such as forensics advisers, computer experts, polygraph technicians, behavioral scientists and technical specialists. 

AFOSI operates more than 160 units worldwide, to include its headquarters at Andrews AFB, Md. The units are divided into eight field investigation regions, which fall into detachments and field investigative squadrons. 

OSI operations fall under several categories: threat detection, criminal investigations, economic crime investigations, information operations and technology protection. 

To learn the mission, new recruits are immersed in an 11-week entry-level training course at the Federal Law Enforcement Center in Glynco, Ga., followed by six additional weeks of agency specific coursework. 

Firearm and weapons training, interrogations, crime scene processing, interviews, defensive tactics, surveillance, and military and federal law are among the courses taught throughout both courses. 

"I joined because I wanted to play a bigger part on the war on terror," Agent Legg said. "It's something different everyday and I've enjoyed my job for the past four years." 

As with any Air Force deployment or temporary duty, special agents are tasked with rotations and assignments throughout their region. Support of exercises, air shows and distinguished visitors are among the duties supported by OSI. 

Their commitment extends not only to the military personnel who serve, but to their families as well. 

"Family members have to be just as committed to the job as you are," he said. "Extra precaution is taken in protecting personal information of all agents." 

Great opportunities exist within the FBI, CIA, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and other federal agencies with training as an OSI special agent, said SA Legg. 

For more information on becoming a special agent, visit a local AFOSI detachment or go to