Specialist Interviewer Suspects

Job Family Investigation
Job Sub Family Investigation
Code INV-INV-SD-Specialist Interviewer Suspects v2.0

Role Purpose

A Specialist Interviewer Suspects undertakes interviews with suspects usually for major crime investigations or those conducted by specialist units. They have a specialist skill set which allows them to maximise and manage the volume and complexity of the investigative material involved in such interviews. This can include multiple offences and/or complex offending, interviews involving multiple perpetrators or linked investigations. They will frequently work in partnership with an interview advisor, depending on the complexity or scope of the investigation.

Key Accountabilities

  • Provide specialist interview support to investigations by conducting the interviewing of suspects to ensure that interview techniques and products are in line with all relevant guidance, legislation and policy.


  • Liaise with relevant others in order to ensure the assessment of the suspect contributes to the production of specialist interview plans, ensuring compliance with legal requirements, to support investigative objectives.


  • Use appropriate specialist suspect interviewing methodologies to interview suspects who may have committed multiple and/or complex offences.


  • Liaise with an interview advisor to establish the nature of the allegation, identify information important to the investigation, explore and consider tactical options for the interview and to discuss any provisions required to support the suspect.


All roles are expected to know, understand and act within the ethics and values of the Police Service.

The Competency and Values Framework (CVF) has six competencies that are clustered into three groups. Under each competency are three levels that show what behaviours will look like in practice.

It is suggested that this role should be operating or working towards the following levels of the CVF:

Resolute, compassionate and committed

Inclusive, enabling and visionary leadership

Intelligent, creative and informed policing

Education, Qualifications, Skills and Experience

Prior education and experience:

  • Must be PIP2 accredited


  • Must have completed specialist suspect interviewing training


  • Extensive suspect interviewing experience, including interviewing knowledge, in at least one specialist area such as: Major Crime, Serious and Organised Crime (SOC), Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and/or Public protection.


  • Knowledge of relevant law, guidance, policy and process for interviews with witnesses and suspects, including PACE and the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994.


  • Knowledge of the criminal justice system.



  • Good communication skills with the ability to listen, empathise, provide support and adapt language, form, and message to meet the needs of different people / audiences.


  • Skilled in the use of use IT packages, systems and/or databases to fulfil role requirements.


  • Able to manage and break down complex investigative material and use it appropriately in specialist suspect interviews.


  • Able to demonstrate attention to relevant detail, review and identify evidential gaps, opportunities and inconsistencies in accounts provided, informing interview plans and formulating challenges accordingly


  • Works effectively in a team to achieve shared objectives, demonstrating awareness of individual differences and provides support and advice as required.


  • Reviews own performance objectively and is able to develop and follow an appropriate improvement plan.


  • Able to plan own work and plan ahead, as well as identify and mitigate risks to delivery.


  • Proactively develops effective working relationships with colleagues, partners and other stakeholders.


  • Able to produce clear and concise reports and other documents following good practice procedures.

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

  • Acquire and maintain PIP level 2 accreditation by keeping a record of recent experience of conducting different types of specialist interviewing which evidences the knowledge and skills gained.


  • Keep up-to-date with new and developing legislation (including current guidance on disclosure) and current national policing priorities e.g. vulnerability, that may impact on investigations and interview advice provided.


  • Ensure that case file management follows current good practice.


  • Keep up-to-date with new approaches to evidence based policing, including engagement with academics and others to support research if requested, and apply the learning.


  • Ensure knowledge and application of PACE is maintained and developed


  • Maintain and update knowledge of law, practice and procedure relating to investigative interviewing.

Professional Registration/Licenses

Assessed competence against relevant professional standards for this role is required to achieve PIP2 specialist accreditation. Maintenance of this accreditation requires the demonstration of continued competence against professional standards as well as evidence of CPD, in line with the College of Policing guidance.

Links to other Profiles

  • Investigator PIP1
  • Investigator PIP2
  • Investigative Manager PIP2
  • Senior Investigator PIP3
  • Specialist Interviewer Victims and Witnesses
  • Interview Advisor
  • Strategic Investigator PIP4
  • Head of Crime
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