How to Become a Crime Scene Investigator Forensic Scientist in Prince William County, Virginia

Residents of Prince William County who want to get a degree in forensics will find a variety of f degrees are available, ranging from forensic science to chemistry with a concentration in forensic chemistry.

Prospective students who seek criminal justice degrees with a concentration in crime scene investigations or forensic science can obtain them from a number of state colleges in addition to the large number of accredited online schools that offer these types of degrees.

The requirements to become a forensic scientist in Prince William County vary a great deal depending on the agency and the position.  A bachelor’s degree in a hard science such as forensics, chemistry, or biology is required to work for the state’s Forensic Science Department.  Typically, relevant lab experience is also required.

Requirements to Become a Crime Scene Investigator or Forensic Laboratory Scientist in Prince William County

Experience is required to work as a fingerprint technician for the county.  The amount varies greatly, depending on the educational level of the applicant.

  • Master’s degree in forensic science:  1-2 years experience
  • Bachelor’s degree in forensic science:  2-3 years experience
  • Associate’s degree in forensic science:  3-5 years experience
  • High school diploma and coursework in print comparison:  5 years experience

A combination of education and experience equivalent to a bachelor’s degree in one of the following fields is required to become a crime scene specialist with the county:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Criminal justice
  • Forensic science
  • Law enforcement
  • Physics

Forensic Laboratory and Crime Scene Investigation Jobs in Prince William County

The category of forensic science technicians includes both scientists who work in labs and those who work in the field analyzing crime scenes.  Jobs in both categories are available in Prince William County.

Forensic Science Lab Technicians – The primary employer of forensic scientists who work in the lab is the Virginia Department of Forensic Services that has its Northern laboratory located in Manassas.  It employs approximately 35 people who provide the following services:

  • Forensic biology
  • Forensic toxicology
  • Controlled substances
  • Latent fingerprints and impressions
  • Firearms and toolmarks

In addition, jobs for forensic scientists are available at the Police Department of Prince William County.  This department has a dedicated Forensic Services Section that employs fingerprint technicians.

Crime Scene Investigations – Two agencies in Prince William County use crime scene investigators (CSIs) to preserve forensic data from crime scenes.  The Manassas Police Department uses sworn officers to investigate crime scenes, while Prince William County Police Department employs civilian crime scene specialists in its Forensic Services Divisions.

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