How to Become a Crime Scene Investigator Forensic Scientist in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin

Over nine agencies employing professionals in the forensic science field in Milwaukee County are working in a collaborative effort to bring the region’s growing violent crime rate down and solve some of Milwaukee’s more than 400 cold case murders. These professionals possess a wide range of skills, training, and education, and have been selected as the top applicants in their field.

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Candidates learning about how to become a crime scene investigator or forensic laboratory scientist in Milwaukee County will find some common requirements across the board, regardless of the law enforcement agency. In Milwaukee County the primary agencies that support forensic science jobs include:

  • Milwaukee Police Department
  • Franklin Police Department
  • Greenfield Police Department
  • Oak Creek Police Department
  • Wauwatosa Police Department
  • West Allis Police Department
  • Milwaukee County Sheriff’s Office
  • Milwaukee County Medical Examiner
  • Wisconsin Department of Justice Crime Laboratory Bureau


Qualifications for Forensic Science and CSI Jobs in Milwaukee County

Forensic lab scientists working at the Department of Justice’s Milwaukee Crime Laboratory must possess the right education according to their area of specialization. This includes the following DOJ recommendations:

  • Drug Identification Unit and Trace Evidence: Bachelor degree in chemistry or a closely related field
  • Fingerprints, Footwear, and Questioned Document Unit: Bachelor degree with science courses
  • Toxicology: Bachelor degree in chemistry or a closely related field
  • DNA: Completion of courses in genetics, molecular biology, and biochemistry plus a bachelor degree in any of the following:
    • Biology
    • Molecular Genetics
    • Chemistry
    • Genetics
    • Biochemistry
    • Any other closely related field

Candidates can fulfill these education requirements through a variety of online schools and certification programs, and there are over a dozen colleges with campuses located in the City of Milwaukee.

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Among crime scene investigator specializations are positions such as evidence technicians, who categorize and assist in the collection of physical evidence, photographers and artists who document crime scenes, and many others who specialize in particular aspects of evidence recovery, including police detectives who often lead CSI investigations and work closely with other personnel. Candidates can add to their qualifications for these jobs by having any of the following certifications:

  • Crime Scene Investigations
  • Crime Scene Reconstruction
  • Blood Stain and Splatter Analysis
  • Forensic Video and Photography
  • Fingerprint Analysis


Working in Milwaukee County

Crime scene investigation specialists from across the county take advantage of two forensic laboratories located in Milwaukee:

  • Department of Justice’s Crime Lab on South 11th Street
  • Milwaukee County Medical Examiner on Highland Avenue

This latter agency does not strictly deal with crime and homicides, although it does operate a forensic toxicology laboratory for detecting drugs, alcohol, and poisons in blood and body fluid specimens.

The Crime Lab is where most of the criminal forensic science takes place, and specializes in the following areas:

  • Trace Evidence
  • Toxicology
  • Controlled Substances
  • Fingerprint Identification
  • DNA
  • Footwear and Tire impressions
  • Forensic Imaging
  • Firearms and Toolmarks
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