3H40

PAY RANGE:  N25

 

FORENSIC LABORATORY SUPERVISOR

(Biology)

(Chemistry)

(Pattern Evidence)

 

GENERAL DEFINITION

 

This is supervisory forensic science work in a municipal law enforcement environment.  Positions in this class are allocated to one of three specialties:  Biology, Chemistry, or Pattern Evidence. Positions allocated to the Pattern Evidence specialty supervise forensic scientists and technicians assigned to one of the following disciplines:  Documents, Firearms/Toolmarks or Latent Prints. Employees in this class plan, assign, monitor and review the casework of a laboratory section that includes subordinate forensic scientists and program leaders, technicians and clerical support staff engaged in the analysis and chain of custody of forensic evidence including confiscated substances, organic or inorganic physical evidence, firearms/tool marks or DNA in support of criminal investigations, with responsibility for compliance to quality assurance policies and procedures.

This class is differentiated from the next lower level by responsibility for supervising a laboratory section. Work in each specialty includes implementing or adapting new or existing analysis and quality assurance procedures; analyzing and interpreting a variety of test data; Work includes preparing technical reports and ensuring that forensic examinations conform to quality assurance procedures.  Contact with law enforcement and court officials and providing expert testimony are significant aspects of the work. All work is performed in accordance with national and international quality assurance standards in the accredited Office of Forensic Science of the Philadelphia Police Department. Work is performed under the general direction of an administrative or technical superior.

 

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

 

  1. Positions in this class must be filled by a qualified forensic examiner, in an area of expert qualification directly related to the laboratory unit being supervised.
  2. Positions in this class must supervise a laboratory section that includes subordinate forensic scientists and program leaders, technicians and clerical support staff engaged in the identification and analysis of physical, biological, and/or chemical substances in support of criminal investigations.
  3. Only two positions will be allocated to each of the Biology and Chemistry specialties. Three positions will be allocated to the Pattern Evidence specialty, one in each area of assignment.
  4. Positions in this class must be located in the Philadelphia Police Department’s Office of Forensic Science.

TYPICAL EXAMPLES OF WORK (ILLUSTRATIVE ONLY)

 

ALL SPECIALTIES

 

            Plans, assigns and reviews the work of program leaders, forensic scientists, technicians and clerical staff conducting a wide variety of analytical and administrative procedures, research projects and related analyses in the area of technical specialty; functions as the lead forensic expert for a laboratory unit; plans and supervises, through a subordinate program leader, procedures for data collection and analysis, professional training and laboratory programs in the area of specialty; ensures work processes to meet performance goals.

Evaluates and selects scientific/technical approaches to analytical problems; develops and recommends testing methods and procedures for routine analyses involving scientific research or adaptation of existing methods; determines methods to be used in the operation of specialized equipment and instruments; establishes and  supervises the use of quality assurance methods to validate analytical data; directs and verifies the maintenance of laboratory sample logs for compliance with quality assurance and accreditation standards.

Supervises the implementation of a professional training program for the preservation, examination, handling and comparative analysis of forensic evidence in the area of specialty; trains or supervises training in quality assurance procedures, analytical methodology, safe usage of testing equipment, and procedures regarding chain of custody, admissibility of evidence and legal testimony; establishes training goals and timelines; documents trainee progress and reports program outcomes to an administrative or technical superior; adjusts trainee goals and recommends corrective actions as required; may direct or instruct college or postgraduate interns.

Supervises unit participation in internal and external audits; prepares and reviews reports including monthly and annual summaries of casework status and unit performance; makes recommendations and submits information or justifications for the annual laboratory budget as required; prepares statistical and technical reports on specialized subjects; reviews laboratory reports and data to ensure that laboratory and quality assurance procedures have been followed.

Researches professional journals and technical reports to identify new forensic analysis techniques and equipment; supervises and participates in the development of new techniques or adaptation of existing methods to specific analytical problems; attends seminars, demonstrations and related professional activities concerning advancements in the area of specialty.

May act on behalf of a Forensic Laboratory Manager and provide training to other units within the Philadelphia Police Department and outside agencies concerning the intake and analysis of evidence, reporting and interpretation of analysis results and determining the significance of results.

Testifies in court about forensic methodology in the area of specialty and specific analysis results; provides expert testimony on general or hypothetical questions and explains technical methods, procedures and other matters in the area of specialty to law enforcement, investigative, civilian and court personnel as required; prepares subordinates to provide expert testimony in court.

Supervises and participates in gathering physical, biological and chemical evidence at crime scenes; interacts with law enforcement, legal and other professionals regarding laboratory services and casework for an assigned laboratory unit.

Performs related work as required.

 

BIOLOGY SPECIALTY

 

Plans, assigns and reviews the examination of physical and biological evidence for trace materials to be tested with presumptive and confirmatory procedures, including but not limited to, those for the presence of blood, semen, saliva, hair and other biological material.  Supervises the examination of biological evidence for the extraction, amplification, quantitation, and genetic typing of DNA; and the selection and preparation of samples for DNA analysis and/or outsourced specialty analysis; reviews the results of physical and biological analyses and/or the genetic profiles generated from biological samples, using validated molecular biology techniques, equipment and software, such as Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), capillary electrophoresis techniques, and autosomal or Y-chromosome Short Tandem Repeat (STR) testing.

Performs and verifies statistical calculations to determine frequencies of matching profiles and advanced statistical calculations to evaluate biological relationships associated with kinship.

May supervise and review the issuance of scientific reports related to the analysis of trace and biological materials or DNA evidence.

 

CHEMISTRY SPECIALTY

 

 Supervises the examination of physical and chemical evidence for trace materials to be tested with presumptive and confirmatory procedures, including, but not limited to the collection and analysis of liquid, solid and gaseous materials, substances and compounds for quantitative and qualitative results.

Plans, assigns and reviews the analysis of macroscopic and microscopic substances for the presence of controlled substances; supervises the identification of controlled substances, precursors, by-products and substances used for drug dilution, the examination and identification of suspected drug paraphernalia and the analysis of foodstuffs for the presence of drugs and poisons.

Supervises the analysis of samples with wet chemistry methods or standard laboratory equipment and/or advanced instrumentation, such as, atomic absorption/emission spectrophotometers, gas/liquid chromatographs, UV-visible, infra-red spectrophotometers, mass spectrometers, scanning electron microscopes, compound microscopes and/or any related equipment.

 

PATTERN EVIDENCE SPECIALTY

 

Document Assignment

 

 Supervises the examination, classification and comparison of documents, papers, checks, stickers, impressions, handwriting and other related evidence and the utilization of advanced techniques to restore or visualize identifying marks and obliterated or altered evidence.

Develops, assigns and participates in research projects related to forensic document analyses.

            Performs related work as required.

 

Firearms/Toolmarks Assignment

 

Supervises the examination, identification, classification and comparison of firearms, weapons, ammunition, tools, toolmarks and other ballistics evidence; checks electronic databases and other files to determine if recovered weapons have a previous record of being stolen or wanted as evidence; conducts ballistics tests and calculations for interior, exterior, terminal and forensic ballistics studies; supervises and may participate in the preparation of reports on examinations of evidence.

            Supervises the use of advanced techniques to restore identifying marks or serial numbers; supervises comparative analysis of bullets and cartridge cases using various comparison microscopes and documentation of findings; oversees the test firing and safety checking of weapons.

Performs related work as required.

 

Latent Prints Assignment

 

Supervises the examination and classification of incoming fingerprint impression evidence; data entry of work received into a computerized tracking program; evaluation and entry of suitable latent prints into an Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) for searching; usage of AFIS results to pull files for manual comparison; and decisions of individualization based on ACE-V scientific methodology.

            Develops, assigns, and participates in research projects related to latent print analyses.

Performs related work as required.

 

REQUIRED KNOWLEDGE, SKILLS AND ABILITIES

 

KNOWLEDGE OF:

 

ALL SPECIALTIES AND ASSIGNMENTS

 

 

BIOLOGY SPECIALTY

 

 

CHEMISTRY SPECIALTY 

 

 

PATTERN EVIDENCE SPECIALTY 

 

All Assignments

 

 

Firearms/Tool Marks Assignment

 

 

ABILITY TO:

 

ALL SPECIALTIES AND ASSIGNMENTS

 

 

CHEMISTRY SPECIALTY

 

 

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 3/14.)

 

EDUCATION:          

 

Completion of a bachelors degree program at an accredited college or university with major course work in:

 

SPECIALTY: DEGREES

 

BIOLOGY:     Any of the following degrees, including the completion of 3 credits in EACH of the following courses:  molecular biology, genetics, biochemistry.

 

1. CHEMISTRY

2. BIOLOGICAL SCIENCE

3. FORENSIC SCIENCE

4. BIOMEDICAL ENGINEERING

5. RELATED SCIENCE DEGREE

 

AND

 

Candidates must also have, prior to appointment, successfully completed 3 coursework credits or have documented training/experience in population genetics or statistics, in accordance with FBI Quality Assurance Standards.

 

CHEMISTRY:

 

1. CHEMISTRY

 

OR

 

Any of the following degrees with a minimum of 24 credit hours in chemistry or biochemistry:

 

1. BIOLOGICAL SCIENCE

2. FORENSIC SCIENCE

3. PHYSICAL OR NATURAL SCIENCE

4. APPLIED SCIENCE

5. CHEMICAL ENGINEERING

 

PATTERN EVIDENCE:

 

1. CHEMISTRY

2. BIOLOGICAL SCIENCE

3. FORENSIC SCIENCE

4. APPLIED SCIENCE

5. ENGINEERING

 

OR

 

1. SCIENCE OR NON-SCIENCE DEGREE with coursework in

     statistics or applied research methods.

AND

 

ALL SPECIALTIES

 

GENERAL EXPERIENCE:

 

Five years of forensic science work, which has included three years as a qualified examiner, at an accredited federal, state or municipal forensic laboratory.

 

AND

 

SPECIFIC EXPERIENCE:

 

One year of forensic science work as a qualified examiner, equivalent to a Forensic Scientist 4, with responsibility for developing and overseeing scientific programs within a specialized unit or an interdisciplinary program in the area of specialization, at an accredited federal, state or municipal forensic laboratory.

 

NOTE: Candidates must provide documentation, prior to appointment, to support their qualification as a qualified examiner. See below for details.

 

QUALIFIED EXAMINER DOCUMENTATION- Must be provided to the Police Department at the time of interview.

 

Proof of successful completion of a training program within an accredited forensic science organization, which resulted in qualification as an expert (forensic examiner) in the area of specialty and assignment.  Qualification must have included independent forensic casework, routine proficiency testing, and testimony as an expert in the area of specialty/discipline. External candidates must provide documentation to support their qualification as an expert.  Documentation should include:

 

1.    A certificate or letter from an accredited forensic laboratory that details the area and date of qualification.

2.    Proof of the laboratory’s accreditation from either ASCLD-LAB, FQS, or another ISO 17025 forensic accrediting body.

3.    Proof of successful completion of routine proficiency test may include copies of proficiency test results, a summary document from the laboratory’s quality assurance program, or other documentation that details scope and completion of proficiency testing.

4.    Proof of testimony experience may include a copy of a court transcript from one or more trials, or a letter from a court official detailing the expert’s experience testifying in court as an expert in a specific discipline.

 

NOTE:  Employees must maintain status as a qualified Forensic Examiner during tenure of employment as a Forensic Laboratory Supervisor.

 

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 one or more of the required degrees and/or specific experience 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 degree and/or experience.

 

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).

 

LICENSES REGISTRATIONS AND/OR CERTIFICATES

 

Possession of a valid proper class motor vehicle operators license as issued by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania prior to appointment and during tenure of employment as a Forensic Laboratory Supervisor if required by work assignment.

 

Class Established - 6/53

Revision & Consolidation with 3H46: CSC - 07/99; Ad Board - 08/99

Spec. Revision: CSC - 10/03; Ad. Board - 01/04

Latest Spec. Revision - CSC- 2/14; Ad Board- 3/14

 

CW