The Federal Public Defender of Oregon is accepting applications for the position of full-time investigator in the Portland office. The Federal Public Defender is committed to the pursuit of justice by advocating in federal court for the constitutional rights and inherent dignity of individuals who are accused or convicted of crimes and cannot afford their own lawyer.
Investigators are part of the Federal Public Defender team representing indigent defendants charged with federal crimes ranging from drug offenses to murder to complex fraud, as well as individuals challenging state convictions through federal habeas corpus proceedings.  Investigators work under the direction of the case attorney, investigator supervisor, and the Federal Defender to uncover the facts to effectively advocate for our clients at all stages of their cases including pretrial release, motions, trials, sentencing, and post-sentence proceedings.
Like our lawyers, investigators work closely with clients and typically carry mixed caseloads. Depending on the needs of the case, investigators identify, investigate, and interview fact and mitigation witnesses and experts; locate and obtain relevant records; work with treatment providers, probation and pretrial services officers, and family members; and assist with proffers, testimonial hearings, and trials. Investigators should anticipate some work outside normal working hours and on weekends, as well as travel both within and outside of the District of Oregon as needed for client meetings, witness interviews, and record collection.
·         Locate witnesses, evidence, records, and personal property.
·         Conduct interviews with clients, witnesses, experts, family members, and other individuals.
·         Photograph and document crime scenes and evidence.
·         Analyze extensive electronic discovery and develop investigation plans using the identified facts.
·         Develop mitigation evidence based on mental health, historical, environmental, and social factors.
·         Write comprehensive descriptive reports on work completed.
·         Assist attorneys in court, including testifying at court proceedings.
·         Advocate for clients who are facing difficulties while incarcerated, as well as clients who are on pretrial or post-conviction supervised release to provide support, crisis intervention, and case management assistance.
·         Facilitate client referrals for community-based services including services relating to vocational and educational development, criminal justice and supervision involvement, community integration, substance abuse and mental health treatment, family and interpersonal relationship support, and health and trauma counseling.
·         Three or more years of progressively responsible investigative experience in the functional areas described in the Primary Job Duties section above.
·         The necessary initiative, ingenuity, resourcefulness, maturity, and judgment needed to perform the Primary Job Duties to a high standard of excellence.
·         Comprehensive knowledge of fact and mitigation investigation principles, methods, and techniques.
·         Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
·         Knowledge of legal processes.
·         Computer and social media literacy, familiarity with Windows OS, and proficiency with Microsoft Office applications, Adobe Acrobat, and Accurint (or similar).
·         A valid driver’s license, reliable transportation, and applicable insurance.
·         A demonstrated commitment to and comfort working with diverse communities and with clients from a range of backgrounds.
·         English-Spanish Bilingual language skills.
·         Experience working in and/or with Native American, Hispanic and/or African American communities.
·         A background in social work, reentry courts, mental health treatment and diagnosis, and recovery and addiction treatment.
·         Experience with international investigation and travel.
·         Experience with matters involving complex fraud, bankruptcy, and financial records.
SELECTION CRITERIA: Application materials, interviews, and references must demonstrate that the candidate possesses the knowledge, skills, and abilities to perform the duties of the position. The ideal candidate must believe in this office’s mission of zealously protecting and advocating for our clients’ interests. Candidates with significant criminal investigation experience, language skills, relevant cultural experience, and familiarity with federal criminal defense practices will be prioritized.
COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS: This is a full-time position with federal judiciary salary and benefits based on qualifications and experience relative to the General and Specialized Experience Requirements section of the Investigator position in the Defender Organization Classification System - DOCS.  Relevant higher education, such as criminal justice, social work, or similar, may be substituted for up to one or two years of experience for qualifications and salary calculation purposes.
Compensation includes 11 paid federal holidays, 13 paid sick days annually, and 13 paid vacation days annually (to start), as well as comprehensive health insurance options, life insurance, retirement contributions, and the Thrift Savings Plan, a 401k-like plan with a substantial matching contribution.
Starting salary ranges from $70,853 to $155,132 per year, JSP Grades 11 to 14 in the Judiciary Salary Plan. Subject to Step increases and annual Congressional increases to the scale (equivalent to GS scale). Applicants who are current federal employees are subject to Grade and Step matching rules per Judiciary policy.
How To Apply: Ifyou love defense-oriented investigation work, embrace challenges, and want to be part of a dedicated, resourceful, and committed indigent criminal defenseteam, please e-mail:
·                       A letterofinterest,
·            A resume,
·            A relevant writing sample,
·            Contact information for three professional references
 in .pdfformat (ideally in a single document)to:
Subject: Investigator-Portland
Openuntilfilled.Applicationswill be reviewed as they are received. One or more positions may be filled from this advertisement.Allresponseswill remainconfidential. Onlycandidatesinconsiderationforthispositionwillbecontacted.
We encourage applications from individuals with diverse perspectives, especially people historically underrepresented in the practice of law.
The Federal Public Defender’s Office is committed to improving diversity in the legal profession. The nature of our work leads us to recruit colleagues who demonstrate experience with, knowledge of, and sensitivity to the needs of culturally diverse and systemically oppressed populations.
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Criminal Defense Investigator
Job Location: 
Portland, OR
Job Description (PDF):