Latent Fingerprint Examiner

City Of Indianapolis and Marion County - Indiana2.9

The Latent Fingerprint Examiner analyzes, compares, evaluates and verifies forensic latent and inked fingerprint evidence. Utilizes sophisticated computerized technology (AFIS: Automated Fingerprint Identification System), in an attempt to identify crime scene evidence. Presents expert testimony in court based on the analysis of the data provided.

***Internal Candidate Only***

Position Responsibilities
Assigned forensic evidence (fingerprints and palm prints) recovered from scenes of crimes, to analyze, compare, evaluate and verify.

Verify the accuracy of the data that has been entered into the Latent Case Management System. To ensure that chain of custody issues do not occur when information is presented in court.

Perform an analysis to ascertain if the evidence is of value for the investigation of said case.

Record conclusion of the analysis into the latent case management system for documentation and information retrieval by detectives and prosecutor staff.

Screen available external documentation through multiple case reporting programs, to compile suspect and victim information.

Research the criminal records to determine whether the suspect and/or victim has print records on file in order to utilize these records for comparison purposes.

If pre-filter analysis does not achieve a positive identification, further investigation is conducted by entering the evidence into the Automated Fingerprint Identification System.

Analyze results from AFIS and manually perform comparison on the lead information gathered.

The examiner independently concludes whether it is an identification or non-identification.

The evidence is then given to a second examiner who independently performs a re-evaluation following the same methodology as the first examiner, in order to verify the results.

An erroneous identification by either the original examiner or the verifying examiner will result in the immediate dismissal from the Latent Print Unit.

Reports are then generated as to the identification or non-identification of latent evidence and disseminated to the appropriate personnel.

Conduct pre-trial interviews with prosecutors and detectives to develop proper knowledge and questioning in cases where expert print testimony is utilized.

Prepare Case Exhibits for court testimony.

Testify for prosecutors and defense attorneys as expert witness in local, state and federal courts as subpoenaed.

Perform job responsibilities with all law enforcement agencies (local, state and federal).

Train to competency new hire Identification Processing Personnel on fingerprint pattern recognition, fingerprint comparison and fingerprint identification. Explains scientific factors that allow fingerprints to be utilized as a positive identification of individuals.

Train other departmental and other agency personnel on fingerprint and documentation systems as it pertains to chain of custody and continuity of forensic evidence.

All examiners are required to be on call at all times for areas of responsibilities as it pertains to their job duties.

Provides input to maintain statistics for latent print casework for departmental and federal statistical base.

Provide supervisory coverage to the Identification Section when needed as well as perform supervisory functions in the Latent Unit in the absence of the Latent Print supervisor.

Make appointments with prosecutors, defense attorneys, detectives, victims and suspects in order to obtain inked elimination prints for comparison purposes.

Performs tenprint comparisons on check and pawn card cases.

Performs tenprint comparisons on post mortem strips of deceased persons for identification verification.

Performs custodian of the criminal record duties, which includes expert fingerprint testimony for the continental United States jurisdictions as subpoenaed.

Applicants must have a bachelor or advanced degree from an accredited college or university with completion of at least 12 credit hours in physical or biological science-related coursework. Professional experience in either a forensic laboratory or law enforcement agency in the latent fingerprint discipline may substitute on a year-for-year basis for the required college education.

Based on new court challenges examiners must possess complete knowledge of the scientific basis of friction ridge development and its validity for the positive identification of individuals.

Possess knowledge of the various fingerprint classification systems used throughout the world in order to communicate, utilize, and retrieve data from manual filing systems.

Possess technical expertise of AFIS computer systems.

Complete knowledge of Photoshop for the management of digital images.

Possess knowledge of laws and procedures of evidence, court policies and procedures, multiple law enforcement information systems, and records maintenance.

Knowledge of evidence processing procedures to develop friction ridge detail.

Thorough knowledge of friction ridge history.

Skill in operation of friction ridge enhancement equipment.

Must successfully establish competency through yearly proficiency testing, which is administered through an independent outside agency.

Continually works towards requirements for professional certification through training seminars, experience and continuing education.

Ability to interpret shades of gray in order to perform the necessary methodology for friction ridge identification.

Ability to see intricate shapes and uniqueness.

Effectively communicate orally and in written form for both general and technical reports.

Ability to design charts, tables and graphs for use in trials, demonstrations and training.

Knowledge of supervisory skills and SPO's.

Other job requirements include confidentiality, ethics, thoroughness, and extreme accuracy in performance of duties.

Must have a valid Indiana drivers license.

Must possess the ability to obtain and maintain:
A.) IDACS/NCIC Certification

B.) FBI or equivalent Fingerprint Classification Certification

C.) FBI or equivalent Advanced Latent Fingerprint Certification

D.) FBI or equivalent Administrative Latent Fingerprint Certification

E.) IAI Latent Certification

Independent Judgment
The Latent Print Examiners are required to make independent decisions based on their analysis, comparison, and evaluation of forensic evidence. This decision, free from external stimulus, often has a direct impact on an accused individual's freedom, incarceration, and even in capital punishment cases, their death. There is an enormous amount of responsibility and stress placed on the individual latent examiner to make independent decisions.