Forensic Photographer

Forensic photographers take pictures of accidents and crime scenes so that there will be a permanent visual record that can be produced as evidence in court. They photograph things such as injuries fingerprints footprints blood spatters bullet holes tire marks dead bodies or any other detailed crime scene evidence that will be needed for legal or insurance purposes. Forensic photographs must be capable of taking accurate clear and detailed pictures that meet the legal standards for which they are intended. In addition to basic photography skills they need to know exactly what kinds of photographs will best reflect the scene. According to the website www.skillset.org forensic photographers are often employed by police departments or coroner’s offices but some work for forensic service companies. After they have experience working for police departments or forensic service companies some decide to go out on their own and work as independent contractors providing services to lawyers or insurance companies. According to the website www.legal-criminal-justice-schools.com the International Association for Identification (IAI) offers certification for forensic photographers if they are currently employed in a forensic photography job have three or more years of photograph experience and have taken 40 credit hours of photography courses at a college police department or FBI academy. It is helpful if forensic photographs have taken courses in forensic science law enforcement or criminal justice. Forensic photographers must be willing to work odd hours whenever their services are needed and the work can be emotionally stressful due to the nature of the scenes they must photograph. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a positive outlook for jobs in forensic science and the average annual salary is approximately $50000.

Education Required: Associate's Degree
Avg Salary: $50000
High Salary: $60000
Low Salary: $40000
Tasks: Uses photography to support evidence in a legal case.
Produces a permanent visual record of crime scenes.
Works for police departments or coroner's office.
Utilizes digital imaging to enhance images.
Also Called: Crime Scene Investigator
Law Enforcement Officer
Forensic Scientist
Scene of Crime Officer
Additional Resources: http://www.legal-criminal-justice-schools.com/Criminal-Justice-Careers/forensic-photographer.html
http://www.skillset.org/photo/careers/photographers/article_3424_1.asp
http://www.alexanderjason.com/forensic_photographer.htm