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Recruitment #21-RA1-02





THE JOB: Under general supervision, conducts investigations to identify deaths that fall under the jurisdiction of the Coroner’s Office and to determine the cause and manner of deaths; determines the identification of the deceased and notifies the next of kin; collects and preserves forensic evidence; collects and reviews medical records; safeguards the personal effects of the decedent; prepares and submits reports on the death investigation to the Forensic Pathologist; works closely with all agencies concerned with the decedents death; and performs other related duties as assigned.

Employment Standards

THE REQUIREMENTS: Any combination of education and experience which would provide the required knowledge and abilities is qualifying, unless otherwise specified. A typical way to obtain the knowledge and abilities would be:

Graduation from High School or G.E.D certificate and a minimum of an associate degree in forensic science, criminal justice, nursing, or other related fields.


One year of experience in a medical, nursing, or investigative field. Successful completion of the Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Coroner's Death Investigation Course and PC 832 Arrest Course, within twelve months of appointment. Successful passage of the Registry Certification (Basic) examination from the American Board of Medicolegal Death Investigators (ABMDI), must be completed within two years of appointment.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS/CONDITIONS: Capable of performing all the classification’s essential functions, as summarized in the typical tasks section of this job specification with or without reasonable accommodations. Tasks require the ability to manipulate/maneuver up to 100 pounds of body weight, often combined with bending, twisting, or working on irregular surfaces; typically involves some combination of climbing and balancing, stooping, kneeling, crouching, and crawling; occasionally requires hiking in mountainous terrain while carrying equipment.
Sensory Requirements: Requires the ability to recognize and identify similarities and differences between shade, degree or value of colors, shapes, forms, textures, or physical appearance associated with job-related objects, materials, tasks, or people; occasionally requires ability to differentiate sounds and odors.
Environmental Factors: Exposure to variable temperatures, confined workspaces, and heights; strong unpleasant odors; infectious bio-hazardous materials, such as blood, urine, and semen, which might cause chronic disease or death; dust, pollens, chemical irritants; toxic substances; individuals who may be hostile and abusive; evidence that may be disturbing, such as homicide evidence.
Hours: May be required to work flexible hours, shifts, weekends, and holidays and be subject to holdover and callback duty; and to provide a telephone number or means by which employee can be reached.
License Requirement: Possession and maintenance of valid Class C California Driver License issued by the California State Department of Motor Vehicles by the time of appointment.
Background Investigation: Ability to pass a full background investigation.

Knowledge: Some knowledge of basic anatomy, physiology, and medical terminology; California Penal Code, Government Code, Health and Safety Code, and Welfare and Institutions Code relating to the function, jurisdiction and authority of the Coroner's Office; principles and techniques of death investigations including interviewing methods and techniques; rules of evidence regarding chain of custody and methods to preserve and safeguard evidence; office procedures, methods, and equipment including computers and applicable software applications, such as word processing, spreadsheets, email, and databases.

Ability to: Work closely with Forensic Pathologist when investigating cause, manner, and circumstances of unattended or traumatic deaths; read and understand medical charts; maintain professionalism in tragic and emotional situations; establish and maintain effective working relationships; create accurate and comprehensive reports of the findings of a death investigation; gather, analyze, correlate, and preserve forensic evidence; testify in court; demonstrate effective interpersonal and communication skills; work alone and independently; use critical thinking skills in problem solving; and perform strenuous physical activities including lifting and moving dead bodies.


ANNUAL LEAVE - 22 days first year, increasing to 37 days after 15 years of service. Available for vacation and/or sick leave.
HOLIDAYS - 13 paid holidays per year.
BEREAVEMENT LEAVE - 3 days paid in California, 5 days paid out-of-state.
MEDICAL PLAN - The County contracts with CalPERS for a variety of medical plans. For most plans, County contributions pay a majority of the premiums for employees and eligible dependents.
DENTAL PLAN - County pays for employee and eligible dependent coverage.
VISION PLAN - County pays for employee coverage. Employee may purchase eligible dependent coverage.
RETIREMENT - Pension formula 2% at age 60 or 2% at age 62 as determined based on provisions of the CA Public Employees’ Pension Reform Act of 2013(PEPRA). Pension benefit determined by final average compensation of three years. County participates in Social Security.
LIFE INSURANCE - County paid $20,000 term policy. Employee may purchase additional life insurance.
DISABILITY INSURANCE - Employees in the General Representation Unit participate in the State Disability Insurance (SDI) program. This program is funded 100% by employee payroll deductions.
DEPENDENT-CARE PLAN - Employees who make contributions for child or dependent care may elect to have their contributions made utilizing “pre-tax dollars.”
H-CARE PLAN - Employees who pay a County medical premium may elect this pre-tax program.
HEALTH CARE FLEXIBLE SPENDING ALLOWANCE (HCFSA) - Employees may elect this pre-tax program to cover qualifying health care expenses.
DEFERRED COMPENSATION - A deferred compensation plan is available to employees.

Selection Plan

THE EXAMINATION: Your application and supplemental questionnaire will be reviewed to determine if you have met the education, experience, training and/or licensing requirements as stated on the job announcement. If you meet these criteria and are one of the best qualified, you may be required to compete in any combination of written, oral and/or performance examinations or a competitive evaluation of training and experience as described on your application and supplemental questionnaire. You must pass all components of the examination to be placed on the eligible list. The examination may be eliminated if there are ten or fewer qualified applicants. If the eligible list is established without the administration of the announced examination, the life of the eligible list will be six months and your overall score will be based upon an evaluation of your application and supplemental questionnaire. If during those six months it is necessary to administer another examination for this job class, you will be invited to take the examination to remain on the eligible list.

HOW TO APPLY: Apply Online Now!  Click on the link below; or print out an application and supplemental questionnaire and mail/bring them to: Santa Cruz County Personnel Department, 701 Ocean Street, Room 510, Santa Cruz, CA, 95060.  For information, call (831) 454-2600.  Hearing Impaired TDD/TTY: 711.  Applications will meet the final filing date if received in one of the following ways:  1) in the Personnel Department by 5:00 p.m. on the final filing date, 2) submitted online before midnight of the final filing date.

Women, minorities and people with disabilities are encouraged to apply.  If you have a disability that requires test accommodation, please call (831) 454-2600.

To comply with the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act, Santa Cruz County verifies that all new employees are either U.S. citizens or persons authorized to work in the U.S.

NOTE: The provisions of this bulletin do not constitute an expressed or implied contract.

An Equal Opportunity Employer

County of Santa Cruz




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