3G42

                                                                                                                        PAY RANGE: EP12

 

POLICE FORENSIC SCIENCE TECHNICIAN

 

GENERAL DEFINITION

 

            This is forensic science technician work at the full performance level in support of criminal investigations for the Office of Forensic Science of the Philadelphia Police Department. Employees in this class assist qualified forensic examiners by supporting forensic science duties involved in the receipt, transfer, preservation, handling, preparation, analysis and comparison of items of evidence collected in criminal investigations. Employees in this class examine physical and trace evidence obtained from crime scenes and provide information on laboratory findings for presentation in criminal trials and perform work in one of the following assignments: Evidence Control, Biology/Chemistry or Pattern Evidence.  Positions within the Biology/Chemistry assignment prepare samples for analysis by a forensic scientist and enter forensic sample data into databases. Positions in the Pattern Evidence assignment classify, and analyze physical evidence related to a specified functional area; Firearms Identification, Document Analysis or Fingerprint Identification. Positions in the Evidence Control assignment receive, analyze, classify and store all evidence submitted to the Office of Forensic Science (OFS) and make recommendations to increase efficiency of evidence submission and storage processes. An employee in this class may be required to work on a rotating shift. All work is performed in accordance with national and international quality assurance standards. Work is performed under the supervision of a technical or administrative superior, and involves some disagreeable aspects.

 

ALLOCATING FACTORS:  (The following conditions must be met for a position to be allocated to this class.)

 

1.    The position must perform forensic science technician work at the full performance level.

2.    The position must assist qualified forensic examiners by supporting forensic science duties involved in the receipt, transfer, preservation, handling, preparation and comparison of items of evidence collected in criminal investigations.

3.    The position must perform the work in the Office of Forensic Science of the Philadelphia Police Department.

 

TYPICAL EXAMPLES OF WORK (ILLUSTRATIVE ONLY)

 

ALL ASSIGNMENTS

 

Supports the activities of qualified forensic examiners in the receipt, transfer, preservation, examination, handling, and comparative analysis of items of evidence collected in criminal investigations; receives and transports evidence obtained from crime scenes; logs in samples in compliance with departmental and national forensic accreditation procedures; stores samples according to properly established protocols; identifies and  classifies evidence to be transferred to specific areas of specialty; prepares evidence for examination; enters samples and/or data into appropriate forensic databases; may operate and maintain a variety of forensic science equipment applicable to the area of assignment; performs simple maintenance, adjustments and inspection of equipment; calibrates forensic science equipment applicable to the area of assignment by utilizing a variety of controls and prepared samples; prepares and monitors forensic supplies; maintains forensic environment in a sanitary condition; performs various quality control functions as required.

Assists in the development of administrative reports and presentations; assists forensic scientists with the generation of reports and/or projects; records evidence information into electronic data-system; updates records as required; labels evidence containers; stores evidence in temporary facilities; logs evidence in and out of property rooms; accesses Police and Court computer systems for incident, defendant and court information; testifies in court as to results and nature of testing in civil and criminal cases and regarding chain of custody of evidence; explains laboratory results to investigators and attorneys as required.

Provides information about evidence to forensic scientists; maintains written or electronic logs; utilizes the computer based Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS) of the OFS to properly document all case activities; logs any observations and actions related to evidence samples;

            Complies with all administrative and technical directives of the Police Department and Office of Forensic Science; complies and maintains compliance with all requirements of all relevant forensic science accreditation standards; explains protocols and actions to senior OFS forensic scientists, investigators and attorneys as required.

May perform statistical analysis of data, using mean, standard deviations and various other formulae; compiles and enters data; performs calculations.

            Participates with forensic scientists in the training of lower level technicians in forensic laboratory techniques, databases and analysis.

             

Biology/ Chemistry Assignment

 

Prepares and monitors reagents; prepares, cleans and disinfects laboratory glassware and other supplies; prepares biological or chemical samples for analysis by forensic scientists, according to documented protocols; sample preparation may include, but is not limited to, specimen selection, initial examination, proper drying, and swabbing/cutting specimens for serological or DNA examinations; assists forensic scientists with administrative and technical products.

 

Evidence Control Assignment

Receives forensic evidence (including drugs, firearms, fire debris, explosives, documents, biological materials, any physical material used in the course of a criminal investigation, etc.); examines evidence containers for contents, physical hazards, proper seal, and packaging and labeling; returns materials not correctly sent or improperly and unsafely packaged.

            Evaluates evidence submissions and requests to determine the most appropriate unit to analyze evidence; contacts police units, courts, and District Attorney’s office to coordinate submissions and requests; assist forensic scientists in the coordination of analytical requests, files and evidence transfers; accepts and inventories previously submitted and analyzed evidence that has been presented in Court;  assists in inventorying and disposing of evidence to external facilities; repackages inventories and properly stores evidence that requires drying or special handling; assists forensic scientists with files, reports and other administrative aspects of the forensic analysis; provides training to law enforcement regarding the proper handling, packaging and submission of forensic evidence; assures compliance with any existing national standards related to forensic evidence submission and storage; evaluates processes and makes recommendations to increase efficiency of evidence submission and storage processes; implements standards and the evaluates the need to apply changes to PPD policies to comply with new standards regarding evidence submission and storage; establishes initial case entries into the LIMS and other relevant databases.

 

Pattern Evidence Assignment

 

Performs duties in a specified functional area; Firearms Identification, Document Analysis or Fingerprint Identification; prepares and monitors reagents; uses integrated ballistics identification systems, latent print identification systems or document analysis procedures according to protocols; visually recognizes and accurately determines basic correlated microscopic marks and other characteristics in a forensic examination related to the specified area; takes photographs of evidence to include photomicrographic techniques; prepares specimens for analysis by a qualified forensic scientist; assists forensic scientists with administrative and technical products.

 

REQUIRED KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES

 

KNOWLEDGE OF:

 

·         the practices, procedures and techniques used to prepare, examine and analyze laboratory specimens applicable to work assignment

·         legal and/or medical terminology, as applied to area of assignment

·         laboratory safety related to hazardous substances and biological hazards as required by work assignment

·         the principles, methods and techniques involved in applying the disciplines of chemistry, biology or pattern evidence to tests performed

 

SKILL IN:

 

 

ABILITY TO:

 

·         learn preservation techniques for items submitted in evidence and laws affecting the handling of physical evidence and the confidentiality of reports for the Evidence Control assignment

·         learn techniques for handling, disarming and storing all types of firearms for the Pattern Evidence assignment

 

MINIMUM ACCEPTABLE TRAINING AND EXPERIENCE  (The following statement represents the minimum training and experience standards which will be used to admit or reject applicants for tests.  Applications submitted by candidates for this class will be reviewed based on training and experience requirements as approved on 9/14.)

 

Option 1:

 

EDUCATION:

 

            Completion of 60 credits at an accredited college or university with major coursework in:

 

Biology/Chemistry and Pattern Evidence Assignment:

 

1.    Biology

2.    Chemistry

3.    Related physical or natural science

 

Evidence Control Assignment:

 

1.    Criminal Justice

2.    Legal Studies

3.    Paralegal Studies

4.    Any related field

 

OR

 

Option 2: Forensic Laboratory Experience

 

EDUCATION:

 

Education equivalent to the completion of the twelfth school grade.

AND

EXPERIENCE:

 

Four years of full time experience in Office of Forensic Science of the Philadelphia Police Department or an accredited Forensic Laboratory performing technician level work in a forensic sub-discipline in support of police investigations.

 

OR

 

Option 3: Military experience

 

EDUCATION:

 

Education equivalent to the completion of the twelfth school grade.

 

AND

EXPERIENCE:

 

            Two years of active military service with an honorable discharge with specialized experience in armor, artillery, biology, chemistry, logistics, engineering or military police or in an area of experience related to an area of assignment.

 

            NOTE: Selective Factor Certification may be utilized, as needed, to fill specific positions. In accordance with Civil Service Regulation 11.032 - Selective Factor Certification - the appointing authority may request certification of eligible candidates with the experience or education in the area of study to fill specific positions in this class. Certification to fill such positions will be made from the two highest-ranking eligible candidates on the eligible list who possess the specified experience or education.

 

City of Philadelphia Class(es) which typically meet the experience requirements:

 

Biology/Chemistry Assignment:

 

Science Technician (Police Assignment) (3G32)

 

Pattern Evidence Assignment:

 

Firearms Identification Technician (6C05)

Fingerprint Identification Specialist 1 (6C12)

Fingerprint Identification Specialist 2 (6C13)

Fingerprint Identification Supervisor (6C14)

Evidence Control Assignment:

 

Legal Service Clerk (Forensic Evidence Specialty) (1B40)

 

PHYSICAL AND MEDICAL REQUIREMENTS

 

            Ability to physically perform the duties and to work in the environmental conditions required of a position in this class.

            Ability to visually distinguish test results, which may include color changes, pattern recognition, and interpretation of electronic data (tables, graphs and charts) if required by assignment.

 

                                                                                                               Class Established - 9/65

Spec. Revision: CSC - 6/97, Ad. Bd. - 9/97

                                                                                              Latest Spec. Revision: CSC: 8/14

                                                                                                                                  Ad Board: 9/14

 

CW