Employment Opportunity

Forensic Scientist I, Drug Chemistry

North Carolina Department of Justice, Raleigh, North Carolina

Salary: $42,780.00 - $72,424.00 Annually

Final Filing Date: November 30, 2021

THE STARTING SALARY FOR A NEW HIRE TO THIS POSITION IS LIMITED TO THE RECRUITMENT RANGE OF $42,780 to $58,845. Salary offers are based upon the candidate's education and experience related to the position, as well as departmental budget and equity considerations.

The primary purpose of the Drug Chemistry Section is to provide the North Carolina Criminal Justice System with trained and experienced forensic scientists who analyze evidence seized in the course of criminal investigations. The forensic services provided include laboratory analysis and expert witness testimony in the areas of controlled substances, drug dilution, drug tampering and clandestine drug laboratories.

The primary purpose of this Forensic Scientist I assigned to Drug Chemistry is to perform entry level casework – an equitable share of the analysis performed by the Section, prepare written reports of the results of the analysis. The Forensic Scientist I will complete prescribed Drug Chemistry Training requirements before beginning casework.

Duties and Requirements Click to read more


  • The Forensic Scientist I will perform casework on drug evidence seized by law enforcement officers in the course of criminal drug investigations with the exception of clandestine laboratory evidence, drug tampering/dilution evidence and cases that involve tampering of food products. The evidence must be analyzed to identify unknown material or either to confirm or verify what the officers believe the evidence to contain.The evidence is analyzed to determine the presence or absence of any controlled substances. Some or all of the following screening and confirmation techniques are used in the analysis:
    • Color Testing
    • Ultraviolet Spectrophotometry (UV)
    • Microscopy
    • Infrared Spectroscopy (IR)
    • Gas Chromatography/Mass Spectroscopy (GC-MS)
  • The Forensic Scientist I will perform casework with a limited degree of technical independence. Forensic Scientists must be very familiar with the North Carolina General Statutes.The Forensic Scientist must also be able to classify controlled substances using the North Carolina Controlled Substances Act – Schedules I through VI.
  • The analysis must be documented by the Forensic Scientist as required by the Crime Laboratory's quality assurance procedures. Forensic Scientists must also issue a clear and concise written laboratory report. Laboratory reports are used by Law Enforcement officers in their investigations, District Attorneys in their determination of what, if any, criminal charges will be filed against a defendant, other types of Attorneys, Courts and Juries in determining a defendant's guilt. The Forensic Scientist's work is checked through a technical and administrative review of the laboratory case file, which includes all of the documentation and the laboratory report produced by the Forensic Scientist during the analysis.
  • The Forensic Scientist must testify in state and federal courts as to his/her analysis of the evidence.
  • The Forensic Scientist I will complete the prescribed Drug Chemistry reviewer training requirements before reviewing casework
  • This position may be required to work overtime for court travel and completion of work.
  • The Forensic Scientist shall be required to obtain individual certification consistent with the international and ISO standards within 18 months of the date the analyst becomes eligible to seek certification according to the standards of the certifying entity. Overtime is required in this position. This position is subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act.
  • The Forensic Scientist participates in competency and proficiency testing.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities / Competencies
  • Employees must have a working knowledge of the principles, concepts, theories, reference sources and laboratory practices involved with the forensic examination of evidence.
  • Employees must have a working knowledge of criminal law and of the rules and regulations regarding evidence gathering.
  • Employees must have a working knowledge of scientific methodology and of laboratory safety practices.
  • Ability to perform and record complex standardized and non-standardized laboratory tests and procedures.
  • Ability to analyze results, interpret methodology, and to understand and solve theoretical problems.
  • Ability to express technical information clearly both orally and in writing when reporting results, testifying or explaining procedures to others.
  • Ability to understand and follow complex oral and written instructions.
  • Ability to perceive colors normally and make olfactory distinctions.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships.


Minimum Education and Experience Requirements
  • Drug Chemistry/Toxicology Bachelor's degree with a major in chemistry, toxicology, pharmaceutical science with chemistry concentration (organic, inorganic, analytical or physical), forensic science (with concentration in chemistry or toxicology), biochemistry, pharmacology or closely related curriculum from an appropriately accredited institution; or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
Necessary Special Requirement:
  • Must obtain individual certification consistent with international and ISO standards within eighteen months of the date the analyst becomes eligible to seek certification according to the standards of the certifying entity.
Management preference:
  • Management prefers 2 years of related experience.

Do you have the Education Required? See available on-line and campus-based degree programs now!


How to apply: Apply online

″As I have found a job (through this newsletter!) working in the field of forensics, I no longer need a job newsletter. Thank you!” — Amber Click to receive job posting alerts

Posted: November 16, 2021

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