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Public Defender Investigator I-II

Public Defender | Caldwell, ID | Full Time

Job Description

Compensation:  $38,628.00 - $41,155.00 annually / $18.5712 - $19.7861 hourly DOE

Application Period Ends:  4/16/2021 3:30 p.m. MST


General Statement of Duties

Under general supervision, assist in and perform routine, non-sworn investigative work in support of the Public Defender’s Department, serve and criminal legal processes for the Public Defender’s Department; and do other work as required at the direction of the Chief Public Defender and/or his/her designee, which may include significant client and witness contact involving the gathering of evidence for the legal representation of clients of the Public Defender’s Department. Assignments require knowledge of specific areas of criminal defense functions within the Public Defender’s Department.

 

Classification Summary

Public Defender Investigator I:

This is the entry-level class in the Public Defender Investigator series. Under general supervision, performs routine investigative work involving cases referred to the Public Defender’s Department where criminal action is involved or suspected; performs related work as required. Investigator conducts investigations of the less complex misdemeanor, felony, juvenile, and child protection cases referred to the Public Defender’s Department, initially under close supervision. As Investigator gains experience and proficiency in performing tasks, supervisory controls decrease. Investigator must possess some knowledge of pertinent laws, regulations, court procedures, and departmental policies.

The Public Defender Investigator I class is distinguished from the next higher class of Public Defender Investigator II in that the latter is the full working level class, performing skilled investigative work involving sensitive and/or difficult cases.

Public Defender Investigator II:

This is the full working level class in the Public Defender Investigator series. Under direction, performs skilled investigative work involving sensitive and/or difficult cases referred to the Public Defender’s Department where criminal action is involved or suspected; performs related work as required. Incumbents independently conduct investigations of the more complex and sensitive misdemeanor and felony cases referred to the Public Defender’s Department, such as murder cases. Incumbents must possess a working knowledge of pertinent laws, regulations, court procedures, and departmental policies.

Public Defender Investigator II is distinguished from the lower Public Defender Investigator I class in that the latter is the entry level class, is generally assigned routine cases, and performs duties under closer supervision. The Public Defender Investigator II class is distinguished from the higher level of Public Defender Investigator III in that the latter performs highly specialized investigatory duties of the most complex, sensitive, and/or difficult criminal cases that have significant legal implications and/or high degree of publicity, and may also function in a lead capacity.

Public Defender Investigator III:

This is a single position classification within the Public Defender’s Department. Under general direction, performs highly specialized investigatory duties for the most complex, sensitive, and/or difficult criminal cases that have significant legal implications and/or high degree of publicity; may function as lead worker; and performs related work as required. Incumbent performs investigatory duties that require the application of a high level of professional and sophisticated investigatory expertise and knowledge, and in a subject matter expert and/or specialist capacity, and provides a full range of the most responsible, complex, difficult, and sensitive investigatory duties. Incumbent must possess an in-depth knowledge of pertinent laws, regulations, court procedures, and departmental policies.

Public Defender Investigator III is distinguished from the lower Public Defender Investigator I and II classes in that the incumbent in that the former performs highly specialized investigatory duties and is assigned the most difficult and sensitive felony and misdemeanor cases, and may function in a lead capacity with limited supervisory responsibilities. The Public Defender Investigator III class is distinguished from the next higher position of Lead Investigator in that the latter is assigned a full range of supervisory duties.

 

Examples of Work (Illustrative Only)

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

  • Provides support to Lead Investigator(s) that conduct investigations of all types of criminal cases assigned to the Public Defender’s Department;
  • Interviews complainants, witnesses and defendants to collect and document information and record official statements in support of the Public Defender’s Department; investigative dispatching, and prepares routine investigative reports;
  • Reviews case files and extracts case file information useful to the investigation;
  • Performs field service of criminal legal process such as subpoenas, summons, and makes positive identification of person served, and time and location of service;
  • Collects, organizes and analyzes official and unofficial documents related to the assigned cases such as bank records, medical and dental records, title documents, court documents, articles of incorporation, law enforcement records and computer printouts;
  • Identifies and locates witnesses, victims, suspects and persons by using information obtained through directories, utility records, and other available sources, as well as through inquiries of public or private agencies, employers, families, neighbors, or other individuals;
  • Tracks and monitors court proceedings; examines legal papers to verify authority, procedures and time limitations;
  • Prepares and maintains statistical and operational log, records and reports; maintains computerized databases related to the assigned investigative activities;
  • Transports, or assists in transporting clients and/or witnesses;  
  • May photograph physical evidence, witnesses and scenes and prepare crime scene diagrams for use by attorneys in court presentations; may testify in court as to investigative findings;
  • May travel out of county and/or or state; may participate in surveillance and undercover investigations; may load, transport and store evidence;
  • Collects and documents information and statements, prepares written reports.

                    

Other Duties and Responsibilities

  • Performs other related duties as required.

 

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

Knowledge of:

  • Basic functions of a Public Defender’s Department and the criminal justice system;
  • Proper English usage and grammar;
  • Basic research methods and techniques;
  • Basic principles of investigation and basic investigative techniques;
  • Functions, laws, rules, and procedures of the Public Defender’s Department;
  • Basic principles of identification, preservation, and presentation of evidence;
  • Basic principles of the Rules of evidence and of court procedures;
  • Vehicle use policy and procedures.

Ability to:

  • Learn, understand, interpret and apply basic laws, rules and regulations related to functions of the Public Defender’s Department;
  • Communicate effectively in written and oral form;
  • Conduct routine support and/or preliminary investigations;
  • Establish and maintain effective working relationships with those contacted in the course of work, including, but not limited to, co-workers, members of law enforcement agencies, psychiatric and social services agencies, non-profit entities, and the general public;
  • Operate a variety of motor vehicles;
  • Maintain records and files related to the assigned duties;
  • Read, analyze, interpret and understand civil and criminal court documents including civil proceedings, criminal complaints, pleadings, probation reports, prior conviction records, arrest and search warrants, and grand jury documents;
  • Apply basic laws, rules and regulations related to the assigned investigative area;
  • Perform the full range of routine, non-sworn investigative duties;
  • Interview members of the public, clients, witnesses and victims of crimes to extract and document pertinent information;
  • Prepare clear and concise reports.

 

Acceptable Experience and Training

Public Defender Investigator I:

Required:

  • High school diploma or GED equivalency is required; and,
  • Associate’s Degree in administration of justice, criminal justice, criminology, law enforcement, psychology, sociology or a closely-related field; and
  • Two years’ of experience performing duties requiring interviewing, researching and report writing, OR
  • An equivalent combination of experience and training which provides the knowledge and abilities necessary to perform the work.

Preferred:

  • Experience with in-depth interviewing and the securing of information from individuals to determine, on the basis of laws and regulations, the proper case action.

Public Defender Investigator II:

Required:

  • High school diploma or GED equivalency is required; and,
  • Associate’s Degree in administration of justice, criminal justice, criminology, law enforcement, psychology, sociology or a closely-related field; and
  • Three years of experience performing duties comparable to the Canyon County Public defender Investigator I class that included investigation of felony and misdemeanor cases referred to the Public Defender’s Department; or
  • Three years of experience as a law enforcement officer that included the investigation of suspected criminal activities.
  • An equivalent combination of experience and training which provides the knowledge and abilities necessary to perform the work.

Preferred:

  • Experience with in-depth interviewing and the securing of information from individuals to determine, on the  

basis of laws and regulations, the proper case action.

Public Defender Investigator III:

Required:

  • High school diploma or GED equivalency is required; and
  • Equivalent to the completion of four years of college with major coursework in administration of justice, criminal justice, criminology, law enforcement, psychology, sociology or a closely-related field; and
  • Two years of experience performing duties comparable to the Canyon County Public Defender Investigator II class that included investigation of difficult and sensitive felony and misdemeanor cases referred to the Public Defender’s department; or
  • Five years of experience as a law enforcement officer that included the investigation of suspected criminal activities; or
  • An equivalent combination of experience and training which provides the knowledge and abilities necessary to perform the work.

 

Special Qualifications 

  • Successfully complete a criminal background investigation (A felony or misdemeanor conviction may disqualify the applicant);
  • Valid Idaho Driver’s License;
  • Use of County vehicle.

 

Essential Physical Abilities

  • Sufficient clarity of speech and hearing or other communication capabilities, with or without reasonable accommodation, which permits the employee to discern verbal instructions, communicate effectively,  interview people, and perform telephone and radio communication;
  • Sufficient vision or other powers of observation, with or without reasonable accommodation, which permits the employee to comprehend written work instructions, and coordinate and conduct detailed investigations;   
  • Sufficient manual dexterity, with or without reasonable accommodation, which permits the employee to write reports, utilize equipment required for the performance of duties, and operate a vehicle;
  • Sufficient personal mobility, flexibility, stamina, strength, and physical reflexes, with or without reasonable accommodation, which permits the employee to perform all duties required in an investigative environment.

 

EOE Statement

Canyon County is an Equal Opportunity Employer.  Employment decisions related to recruitment and selection are made without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability or genetics.