Crime Scene Specialist I

Job Description


JOB CODE 62800

Effective Date: Rev. 10/08A


The fundamental reason this classification exists is to provide technical support to Detectives, Police Officers and Forensic Scientists in analyzing, photographing, collecting, preserving, and presenting physical evidence. This is the entry-level class in the Crime Scene Specialist classification series. Work is performed in the field, including crime scenes and autopsies, and in the laboratory. Types of crime scenes include person crimes, such as homicides, sexual assaults, and robberies, as well as property crimes and traffic accidents. Incumbents of the Crime Scene Specialist I classification work primarily on less complex casework and/or crime scenes, and participate in the Crime Scene Training Program. Evidence includes fingerprints, tire prints, shoe prints, tool mark impressions, firearms, and biological evidence. Incumbents analyze, photograph, and record crime scenes showing correlation between evidence and scene, and perform various chemical and photographic processes in the field or laboratory to develop and preserve evidence. This classification is the entry level Crime Scene Specialist. Work is reviewed and evaluated by Crime Scene supervisors or leads based on results obtained, observation, and oral and written reports. Shift, weekend, and holiday work is required.


  • Collects, preserves, and presents biological evidence, latent fingerprints, tire prints, shoe prints, tool marks, and other physical evidence;
  • Photographs evidence at crime scenes;
  • Learns how to process evidence in the laboratory using special powders, chemical solutions, forensic light sources, and various cameras, lenses, and filters in order to develop and preserve evidence;
  • Attends autopsies to photograph injuries and fingerprint the deceased for identification purposes;
  • Testifies in court as a witness in connection to the scenes processed and evidence developed and preserved;
  • Writes departmental reports and supplements;
  • Accepts, documents, and bar-codes evidence;
  • Maintains proper chain of custody on evidence and proper packaging;
  • Participates in a structured training program;
  • Inputs data or information into a terminal, PC, or other keyboard device;
  • Demonstrates continuous effort to improve operations, decrease turnaround times, streamline work processes, and work cooperatively and jointly to provide quality seamless customer service.

Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

Knowledge of:

  • Evidence collection and processing using a variety of technical equipment, materials, and processes.
  • Photographic methods and equipment as related to crime scene investigations and laboratory processing.
  • Departmental rules and regulations.
  • Basic rules of evidence.
  • Computers.
Ability to:
  • Communicate in the English language by phone or in person in a group or one-to-one setting.
  • Produce written documents in the English language with clearly organized thoughts using proper sentence construction, punctuation, and grammar.
  • Learn job-related material through structured lecture and reading in the English language. This learning takes place mainly in a classroom setting.
  • Travel over rough, uneven, or rocky surfaces.
  • Move objects weighing less than 50 pounds short and long distances.
  • Remain in a standing or sitting position for extended periods of time.
  • Operate a variety of standard office equipment.
  • Work in a variety of weather conditions with exposure to the elements.
  • Work cooperatively with the public and other City employees.
  • Work safely without presenting a threat to self or others.
  • Perform duties in/on helicopters, aircraft, elevated platforms, ladders and roofs.
  • Perform job duties in conditions which include, decomposing bodies, strong odors, insects, hostility, emotionally charged situations, child and animal victims.

Additional Requirements:

  • Some positions require the use of personal or City vehicles on City business. Individuals must be physically capable of operating the vehicles safely, possess a valid driver's license and have an acceptable driving record. Use of a personal vehicle for City business will be prohibited if the employee is not authorized to drive a City vehicle or if the employee does not have personal insurance coverage.
  • Appointments to positions in the Police Department are subject to meeting appropriate polygraph and background standards.
  • Some positions will require the performance of other essential functions depending upon assignment or shift.


One year of experience in crime scene processing or photography, or an associate's degree in criminal justice, chemistry, or a related field. Other combinations of education and experience which provide the knowledge, skills, and abilities required to perform the work may be substituted.