house detective

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English[edit]

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Noun[edit]

house detective (plural house detectives)

  1. A person employed by a privately owned establishment, such as a hotel or large retail store, with the job of preventing wrongdoing and apprehending violators of laws or other regulations.
    • 1920, Frank L. Packard, The White Moll, ch. 21:
      I went to Cloran, the house detective at the hotel here in New York where Deemer was murdered.
    • 2005, Denis Horgan, "The scene of the South," Spartanburg Herald-Journal (US), 24 April (retrieved 6 Feb. 2010):
      I am usually uncomfortable in such five-star, five-diamond places. . . . I'm afraid I'll break something. Or be found out, collared by the house detective as an interloper unworthy of the surroundings.

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