County of Alameda

Public Defender Investigator II (#8577)

Bargaining Unit: ACMEA - PD Investigators Mgmt (R48)
$52.67-$64.82 Hourly / $4,213.60-$5,185.60 BiWeekly /
$9,129.47-$11,235.47 Monthly / $109,553.60-$134,825.60 Yearly


Under close supervision, assists attorneys in the Public Defender's Office by conducting fact-finding investigations of criminal cases, and performs related work as required.



This is the entry-level professional class in the Investigator series. Under the close supervision of a Senior Investigator or the Chief Investigator, incumbents learn and perform a wide range of investigative duties, including the investigation of misdemeanor and felony cases, including complex felonies. Incumbents may be assigned as a secondary investigator to assist Public Defender Investigator IIIs in homicide cases, and may assist with the training of Public Defender Investigator Is and Investigative Interns. This class is distinguished from the lower-level class of Public Defender Investigator I in that the latter functions in a training capacity, and performs less complex investigative duties. This class is distinguished from the next higher-level Public Defender Investigator III class in that the latter independently investigates a full range of cases from routine misdemeanors to complex felonies and capital homicides as the primary investigator.


NOTE: The following are examples of duties performed by employees in this classification. However, employees may perform other related duties at an equivalent level. Each individual in the classification does not necessarily perform all duties listed.


1. Assists and conducts pre-trial and pre-sentence investigations on misdemeanor and felony cases, including complex felonies and mental health cases. Assists Public Defender Investigator IIIs in the investigation of homicide cases, including locating and interviewing witnesses.

2. Examines and diagrams all necessary measurements at crime scenes.

3. Gathers, marks, records, and preserves evidence; determines the importance and relevance of physical evidence in investigations.

4. Photographs crime scenes, clients’ injuries, and other case-related matters for use as evidence in cases; prepares photographic lineups for witness review.

5. Locates and copies video and other electronic evidence

6. Locates and interviews witnesses; interviews police and other public agencies, doctors, lawyers, and others who may have official or professional information relevant to a legal defense.

7. Examines and selects medical and mental health or psychiatric records, and determines their applicability in pending cases.

8. Reviews police dispatch tapes to determine pertinent and relevant case information; copies dispatch tapes for Public Defenders.

9. Searches computer resources, including DMV, CRIMS, CORPUS, CASP, and the internet to locate witnesses, experts, and professionals, and obtains other case information.

10. Compiles information from witness interviews and other record reviews relevant to the defense. Generates written reports upon completion of the fact-finding process; submits written reports to Public Defenders on witness’ knowledge of material facts.

11. Confers with Public Defenders on case-related matters.

12. Prepares demonstrative evidence such as diagrams, charts, photographs, and computer presentations for use in court.

13. Testifies in court regarding facts established by investigations.

14. Serves subpoenas and legal process for the Public Defender’s Office.

15. Makes arrangements or transports witnesses to and from court, or to court-ordered programs; arranges travel and lodging needs for out-of-County witnesses; and, attends to appropriate witness fee payment.



Two years of full-time experience in the class of Public Defender Investigator I in the Alameda County classified service.


Successful completion of 60 semester, or 90 quarter, units from an accredited college or university, which included the equivalent of at least 24 semester, or 36 quarter, units in Criminal Justice, Criminology, Forensics or a closely related field such as Political Science, Sociology, Psychology, or Journalism.



The equivalent of three years of full-time experience conducting investigations in criminal defense work.



Possession of a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice, Criminology, Forensics, or a closely related field such as Political Science, Sociology, Psychology or Journalism from an accredited college or university may be substituted for one year of the required experience in Pattern II.



Possession of a valid California Motor Vehicle Operator's License is required.


Special Requirements:

Ability and willingness to work irregular hours as individual investigations demand. Must be at least 21 years of age. Ability and willingness to travel out of town, state or country, and stay overnight to complete job assignments.
Must provide fingerprints for purposes of search of local, state, and national fingerprint files to disclose any criminal record.
Depending on the nature of the conviction, a criminal record may result in disqualification.


NOTE: The Civil Service Commission may modify the above Minimum Qualifications in the announcement of an examination.


NOTE: The level and scope of the following knowledge and abilities are related to duties listed under the “Examples of Duties” section of this specification.

Knowledge of:

• Interviewing techniques and procedures, skip tracing techniques, and California State laws as they relate to the service of subpoenas and the treatment of witnesses.
• California criminal court structure and procedures.
• The purpose and organization of the Public Defender's Office.
• Techniques employed in diagramming and making demonstrative evidence to be presented in court.
• The subpoena process.


Ability to:

• Establish rapport with a great variety of people, judge the credibility of witnesses, and be objective in fact-finding.
• Diagram crime scenes.
• Operate a camera (digital or otherwise).
• Maintain composure and professionalism under stressful conditions.
• Keep accurate records and write clear, concise and grammatically correct reports.
• Organize and manage a full misdemeanor caseload.
• Communicate effectively with the public, and coworkers, including attorneys and other staff members.
• Locate and record police radio dispatch calls, video, and other electronic evidence.
• Interview effectively and analytically.

Newspec: 8577
IC:cs 9/16/16
CSC Date: 11/22/16


Alameda County offers a comprehensive and competitive benefits package that affords wide-ranging health care options to meet the different needs of a diverse workforce and their families. We also sponsor many different employee discount, fitness and health screening programs focused on overall well being.  These benefits include but are not limited to*:

For your Health & Well-Being

  • Medical – HMO & PPO Plans
  • Dental – HMO & PPO Plans
  • Vision or Vision Reimbursement
  • Share the Savings
  • Basic Life Insurance 
  • Supplemental Life Insurance (with optional dependent coverage for eligible employees)
  • Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance 
  • County Allowance Credit
  • Flexible Spending Accounts - Health FSA, Dependent Care and Adoption Assistance
  • Short-Term Disability Insurance
  • Long-Term Disability Insurance
  • Voluntary Benefits - Accident Insurance, Critical Illness, Hospital Indemnity and Legal Services
  • Employee Assistance Program

For your Financial Future

  • Retirement Plan - (Defined Benefit Pension Plan)
  • Deferred Compensation Plan (457 Plan or Roth Plan)

For your Work/Life Balance

  • 12 paid holidays
  • Floating Holidays
  • Vacation and sick leave accrual
  • Vacation purchase program
  • Management Paid Leave**
  • Catastrophic Sick Leave
  • Group Auto/Home Insurance
  • Pet Insurance
  • Commuter Benefits Program
  • Guaranteed Ride Home
  • Employee Wellness Program (e.g. At Work Fitness, Incentive Based Programs, Gym Membership Discounts)
  • Employee Discount Program (e.g. theme parks, cell phone, etc.)
  • Child Care Resources
  • 1st United Services Credit Union 

*Eligibility is determined by Alameda County and offerings may vary by collective bargaining agreement.  This provides a brief summary of the benefits offered and can be subject to change.

** Non-exempt management employees are entitled to up to three days of management paid leave. Exempt management employees are entitled to up to seven days of management paid leave.

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