Public Defender Investigative Assistant
Salary: $16.11-$19.67 hourly / $2,802-$3,421 monthly / Range:
DEFINITION: Under general supervision, performs a variety of
paraprofessional criminal and civil investigative tasks; performs
related duties as required.
DISTINGUISHING CHARACTERISTICS: This is an entry-level
classification, which receives supervision from the Public Defender
Investigators. This class is distinguished from the Public Defender
Investigator I in that the latter is a journey-level class
responsible for conducting a full range of criminal and civil
investigations, whereas the Public Defender Investigative Assistant
assists in conducting investigations and performs the least complex
and difficult assignments associated with investigating felonies,
misdemeanors, and juvenile cases.
EXAMPLES OF DUTIES:
1. Travels to facilities, such as hospitals or locked or psychiatric
health facilities, within and outside Santa Barbara County to
interview Public Defender clients who have been classified as
gravely disabled; interviews clients and witnesses, such as facility
staff, family members, and/or friends, with knowledge of Public
Defender clients, to obtain information germane to the client's
2. Interviews clients, suspects, law enforcement, relatives, and
other witnesses to obtain statements, documents, and related factual
3. Researches information needed by investigators, attorneys, or
others in support of legal cases.
4. Completes detailed written reports of interviews conducted and
submits reports to responsible attorneys or investigators.
5. Assists investigators in select phases of investigation by
conducting neighborhood canvasses; locating witnesses; gathering
reports, documents, and records; obtaining police reports and tapes;
and contacting incarcerated clients for signature.
6. Occasionally transports clients and witnesses.
7. Processes and serves documents such as legal motions, subpoenas,
8. Takes photographs of crime scenes, evidence, and other relevant
items; prepares exhibits such as charts, graphs, and diagrams
required for courtroom testimony.
9. Occasionally testifies in court.
10. Operates a variety of equipment, such as 35mm, video, and
1. Completion of an associate's degree that included 12 semester or
18 quarter units in behavioral and/or social sciences, criminology,
administration of justice, or a closely related field; and one year
of general interviewing experience; or,
2. a combination of training, education, and experience that is
equivalent to the employment standard listed above and that provides
the required knowledge and abilities.
Additional Qualifications: Possession of a valid California Class C
Driver's License and the ability to work irregular hours, overtime,
weekends, and holidays.
Basic Knowledge of: human behavior.
Knowledge of: standard English grammar and usage; interviewing
principles and techniques; report writing; standard office software;
research methods, including use of the Internet.
Ability to: work independently; understand and apply laws, rules,
and written directions; establish and maintain effective working
relationships; prepare complete and accurate narrative reports and
records; conduct interviews with a variety of people from different
socioeconomic backgrounds; communicate effectively both orally and
in writing; maintain confidentiality; gather, analyze, correlate,
and evaluate observed facts and evidence; learn and apply the rules
of discovery and obligations of the defense; learn the functions and
extent of authority of the Public Defender's Office.
Desirable Qualifications: Completion of the Defense Investigator's
Training Academy, prior investigative experience, and the ability to
speak and read Spanish is highly desirable.