Police interview

A police interview is simply “the questioning of a person regarding their involvement or suspected involvement in a criminal offence”. Generally, an interview must be carried out at a police station and a caution must be administered. The standard caution which is given will usually be:

“You do not have to say anything. But it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned something which you later rely on in Court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence.”

It’s important to understand this caution, and the interviewing officer must ensure that the caution is completely understood, including explaining the caution and even repeating it in their own words. If necessary, a language interpreter can also be made available to attend an interview.

If you think you’ll struggle to understand this caution due to age, learning difficulties or mental health issues you are entitled to also have an appropriate adult attend the interview with you.

Depending on the circumstances and evidence surrounding the offence, there are 3 main ways of dealing with an interview:

  • Answering the questions posed;
  • Refusing to answer some or all of the questions posed;
  • Submitting a prepared statement.

It’s vital that the appropriate response is chosen and as such legal advice should always be sought.