California has the highest level of employment of forensic scientists in the country. Over 1,700 such professionals were employed in the state in 2012, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Three cities in California were among those with the highest level of employment of forensic scientists. Their rankings are listed below:
- Los Angeles: First
- Riverside: Seventh
- Santa Ana: Tenth
Growth in this field is expected to increase by 17.6% from 2010 to 2020 according to projections by California’s Employment Development Department. They expect one hundred jobs a year to become available in the state.
Salaries are also high in California. Forensic scientists in California earned the second highest average salary of any state in the U.S. The average wage in 2012 was $72,000 while experienced forensic science technicians made an average of $100,700 a year.
Sixty percent of the top ten paying cities for this field are located in California. They are listed below along with their ranking and salary levels:
A large number of forensic scientists work in the field collecting evidence from crime scenes for further analysis. These crime scene investigators (CSIs) hold a variety of positions, ranging from police detectives to civilian positions such as crime scene specialists or forensic lab technicians.
Starting salaries for 2013 for a number of civilian crime scene investigator positions throughout California are listed below:
The BLS provides detailed information on the hourly and annual wages of forensic scientists and CSIs throughout the state. It is shown in the table below: