Forensic Scientist I

ND Office of Attorney General - Crime Laboratory Division, Bismarck, ND, US


Summary of Work: A Forensic Scientist in the Toxicology Unit performs forensic examinations of blood and urine related to police investigations. Duties include: blood volatile analysis using headspace gas chromatography; enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) screening of blood and urine for drugs of abuse; confirmations of drugs of abuse from blood and urine utilizing gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC/MS), liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS/MS), sample preparation using solid phase extraction (SPE) and associated equipment, liquid/liquid extractions, pipetting and centrifuges; documentation of quality assurance and controls, maintenance logs, results entered into a Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS). This class is also responsible for performing related duties as required.

  1. Analyze and perform examinations on evidence to detect and quantify drugs, narcotics, poisons, or other controlled substances using chemical techniques.
  2. Perform housekeeping tasks including maintaining laboratory supplies and reference materials.
  3. Assist in the inventory, maintenance, storage and disposition of evidence.
  4. Enter data into databases and prepare reports on observed and recorded effects.
  5. Prepare evidence and exhibits; appear in court as an expert witness; maintain report files; issue periodic and special reports as assigned.
  6.  Confer with supervisor to reference the appropriate test methodology based on the quantity and quality of the submitted sample.
  7. Learn and perform proper instrument maintenance and repair procedures.
  8. Learn and perform proper reagent and standard preparation and labeling.
  9. Regularly work with a variety of potentially hazardous materials (e.g., HIV, hepatitis, and/or unknown pathogen contaminated body fluids evidence; unidentified chemicals on evidence, used syringes).
  10.  Operate standard office equipment (i.e., personal computer, telephone, fax machine, copier, adding machine, etc.).
  11. Perform job-related travel, as needed.
  12. Perform other related duties as assigned.

This list of duties and responsibilities is not intended to be all-inclusive and may be expanded to include other duties or responsibilities as necessary.

Preference will be given to applicants with experience working in a forensic or crime laboratory, testifying in court, and college coursework in Analytical Chemistry.


Minimum Qualifications: 

  1. A bachelor's or advanced degree in biology/biochemistry, chemistry, forensic science, or a closely related natural science; or a bachelor's degree in criminal justice plus a current nationally recognized certification in an applicable forensic discipline; and two (2) years of work experience as a forensic scientist. In addition, must have successfully completed twenty-four (24) credit hours of college coursework in chemistry and/or toxicology.
  2. Preference will be given to applicants with experience working in a forensic or crime laboratory, testifying in court, and college coursework in analytical chemistry.
  3. Ability, demonstrated in previous employment experience or described in personnel records, to establish and maintain effective, harmonious working relationships with clients, co-workers, and supervisors.
  4. Demonstrated ability to communicate tactfully and with emphasis on customer service.
  5. Excellent prioritization, time management, and organization skills.
  6. Ability to maintain a high degree of confidentiality.
  7. Display interpersonal skills in dealing with customers and co-workers, utilize appropriate telephone etiquette, demonstrate appropriate written and verbal communication skills, and demonstrate ability to perform standard office tasks and operate standard office equipment.
  8. Successful completion of the interview process, reference checks, and standard background and criminal record


Salary: $4,742/month

In addition to the monthly salary, this position includes fully paid health insurance for employee and family (with a wellness rider included), the option to participate in employee-paid dental and vision for employee and family, participation in the state NDPERS defined contribution retirement plan as well as the option to participate in the 457 deferred compensation plan, the option to contribute to a medical spending account, as well as paid annual leave and sick leave.

How to apply

Application Procedures: Applicants are screened based on qualifications, successful completion of the interview process and a background and criminal investigation.

Applicants must be currently authorized to work in the United States on a full-time basis. The Office of Attorney General does not provide sponsorships. Application package must be received by 11:59 PM on the closing date listed on the opening.


Documents to be submitted:

  • Resume
  • Cover letter with a summary that clearly explains how the applicant's work experience is related to the summary of work and minimum/preferred qualifications
  • 3 Professional References
  • College Transcripts (copies or unofficial versions are acceptable)

Anyone needing assistance or accommodations during any part of the application or interview process please contact Ashley, Office of Attorney General: E-mail:; phone: (701) 328-1256, or TTY: 1-800-366-6888.

  • Learn more about Office of Attorney General at:
  • Learn more about Employment Benefits at:
  • Visit North Dakota State government: To learn more about living in North Dakota, visit

Equal Employment Opportunity: The State of North Dakota and this hiring agency do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including sexual orientation and gender identity), genetics, religion, age or disability in employment or the provisions of services and complies with the provisions of the North Dakota Human Rights Act.

As an employer, the State of North Dakota prohibits smoking in all places of state employment in accordance with N.D.C.C. § 23-12-10.