Criminalist I-IV (Firearms and Tool Mark Examiner) *Revised

US Government, District Attorney

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This is a limited-continuous filing exam. Next filing cut-offs are at 5:00 pm on:

1/8/2024, 2/9/2024, *3/8/2024, *4/5/2024, *5/3/2024, *6/7/2024 (Final)

Level 1 – $5,543.64  – $6,737.25/month

Level 2 – $7,398.50 – $8,992.33/month

Level 3 – $9,215.00 – $11,202.08/month

Level 4 – $9,688.33 – $11,774.58/month

Criminalists conduct forensic laboratory analyses of physical evidence, investigate crime scenes, and testify in court as an expert witness on the subjects of forensic analyses and crime scene investigation.

The Criminalist I-IV class series is utilized in a variety of ways within the County of Sacramento District Attorney’s Laboratory of Forensic Services.  This eligible list may be used to fill multiple vacancies, as well as other vacancies as they become available. The current Criminalist vacancy we are recruiting to fill is for an experienced Firearms and Toolmark Examiner at the Criminalist II level or higher.  Duties may include but are not limited to the following:


Evaluate firearm related evidence using accepted techniques to classify, compare, and identify a variety of firearms, cartridges, cartridge cases, bullets, and other related components utilizing microscopic techniques and instrumentation which may include a comparison microscope, stereomicroscopes, digital microscope, and conventional photography.  Perform functionality examinations on submitted firearms and make source determinations for fired and cycled ammunition components.  Document findings, prepare technical written reports, and effectively communicate highly complex scientific material to law enforcement, attorneys, and other agencies and individuals who do not have advanced knowledge of the subject matter.  Prepare exhibits and provide expert testimony concerning the significance of examinations conducted.  Stay current with new and emerging scientific advancements, relevant court decisions, and legal challenges related to areas in forensic science.    


Candidates who have experience in footwear/tire track comparisons and acting as a lead crime scene analyst are highly desirable, but not required for this position.  


Candidates with one or more Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners (AFTE) certifications are also desired, but not required for this position.


  • Firearm Evidence Examination and Identification (FA-AFTE)
  • Toolmark Evidence Examination and Identification (TM-AFTE)
  • Gunshot Residue Evidence Examination and Identification (GSR-AFTE)


In addition to the posted salary for this class, the County of Sacramento offers the following incentives and differentials:



Employees in the Criminalist class will become eligible for a two and half (2.5%) percent differential for possession of any one of the following certifications.  This incentive is not cumulative.  The County will also pay for the annual recertification of the following certifications:

  • American Board of Criminalistics 
  • American Board of Forensic Toxicology 
  • Association of Firearm and Tool Mark Examiners 
  • International Association for Identification



An employee in the Crime Laboratory of the District Attorney’s Office who is assigned in writing by the appointing authority to serve as a lead on the Crime Scene Team shall receive a 10% pay differential.  This differential shall be based on the employee’s standard hourly salary rate and shall be payable only while acting in the lead capacity.  



The safety officer for the Crime Laboratory shall receive a pay differential of 5.0% of the employee’s standard hourly salary rate.  There is typically one individual assigned to this task at a time within the laboratory.



Any Criminalist and/or Supervising Criminalist assigned, in writing, to serve as a DNA Technical Leader shall receive a 5% pay differential of the employee’s standard hourly salary rate.



Permanent employees who reach ten (10) years of full-time service shall receive a 2.5% differential.  Less than full-time permanent employees shall become eligible upon working the equivalent of ten (10) years of full-time service.



Employees can “cash-in” up to forty (40) hours/year vacation after ten (10) years of full-time continuous service and 240 hours accrued vacation per the terms of County policy 306 “Cash for Accrued Vacation Leave”.


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