Fingerprint Technician

Fingerprint technicians who are often called “latent print examiners” work in the law enforcement field. They complete a job that is essential for identifying criminal suspects as well as victims of crime. According to the website fingerprint technicians take fingerprints and handprints and they often compare their findings to other prints in a database either using manual or automated methods. They usually enter fingerprint results into a computer and also file them along with related documents such as photographs and summaries of a person’s criminal history. Fingerprints are used not only to identify criminals and victims but also to check on people who apply for weapons permits and liquor licenses. Fingerprint technicians are usually employed by law enforcement agencies including local and state police departments but they also work for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Many of them work on teams with crime investigators. However fingerprint technicians can also work for security firms or for the health care industry. Aspiring fingerprint technicians need a high school diploma or the equivalent. Typically they are trained by the agency that hires them and after two years of experience alongside an experienced technician they can apply for certification through the International Association of Identification. However earning a bachelor’s degree with courses in forensic science or criminal justice can increase their chances for promotion in the law enforcement system. Although fingerprint technicians usually work a regular 40-hour week they may be called into service on weekends or holidays to help investigate a crime scene. According to the website earnings for fingerprint technicians depend on the organization for which they work and the range of their responsibilities. However their annual salaries range from approximately $40000 to $50000.

Education Required: High School Diploma and Specialized Training
Avg Salary: $45000
High Salary: $50000
Low Salary: $40000
Tasks: Visits crime scenes.
Takes copies of fingerprints.
Enters fingerprints into computer databases.
Analyzes fingerprints in a laboratory.
Also Called: Law Enforcement Agent
Crime Scene Investigator
Latent Print Examiner
Forensic Technician
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