Criminal Defense Investigator – Western District of Pennsylvania


Posting Date: October 5, 2018
Closing Date: November 5, 2018

The Federal Public Defender for the Western District of Pennsylvania is accepting applications for the position of Investigator in its Erie branch office. This is a part-time position. The Federal Public Defender represents indigent criminal defendants in the federal courts in Pittsburgh, Johnstown and Erie, Pennsylvania, under the authority of the Criminal Justice Act, 18 U.S.C. § 3006A.

Job Description: The Investigator will assist the case attorney by investigating and analyzing cases, locating and interviewing victims, witnesses and law enforcement personnel, locating and gathering records, reports and documents, and serving subpoenas. The Investigator may need to visit and recreate crime scenes by measuring, photographing and sketching, and must be able to establish and maintain good working relationships with individuals and agencies that interact with this office, prepare clear oral and written reports, use complex hardware and software programs, cameras, audio recorders and other equipment, assist attorneys and other staff in preparation for court proceedings, and testify in court.

Requirements and Qualifications for this position include three or more years of experience in criminal investigation or information gathering, excellent writing skills, computer proficiency, the ability to communicate and work well with others, demonstrated interest in criminal justice, commitment to obtaining justice for indigent persons, and the ability to perform each of the tasks associated with this position. Applicants must be a high school graduate or equivalent; additional education may be substituted for some experience. A variety of prior experience, including in non-legal fields and/or social work, paralegal or legal assistant training, would be helpful, as would experience developing and analyzing mitigation evidence for court proceedings. Applicants must have a driver’s license, car and appropriate motor vehicle insurance. This position requires considerable initiative, resourcefulness, creativity and drive; the ability to analyze and evaluate facts, evidence and related information; as well as tact, integrity and discretion. This position may require travel, including overnight and out of state.

Salary and Benefits. This is a part-time position with salary and benefits based on qualifications and experience. The position is in the excepted service and does not have the tenure rights of the competitive Civil Service, however, the position does carry regular government employment benefits including health and life insurance, retirement, and the Thrift Savings Plan. The salary range will be a prorated portion of $50,598 - 103,106 (JSP 9-14) based on education and years of relevant experience consistent with federal guidelines and regulations. This position is subject to mandatory Electronic Funds Transfer (direct deposit) for payment of net pay. The selected candidate will be subject to a background check as a condition of employment.  Applicants must be a U.S. Citizen or a permanent resident applying for citizenship and eligible to work in the United States.

Application Information. Qualified applicants should submit a letter of interest and detailed resume in one Adobe pdf document by email to:, using the subject line “2019-02.”

This Office an Equal Opportunity Employer. Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.
Hiring for this position is dependent upon availability of funding.
One or more positions may be filled from this posting.
Only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.
No telephone calls please.