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SIO Corner: TIE Scoring Matrix

This week we continue to look at the use of a matrix to prioritise TIE interviews

In this series we look at various aspects of life as an SIO. This includes the necessary skill sets for the successful SIO, the management of serious crime investigation and specific elements of investigative practice from initial response through crime scene examination and investigative strategies to dealing with suspects and the media. The articles are excerpts from the 2nd edition of Blackstone's, the 'Senior Investigating Officers' Handbook', written by two highly experienced SIOs (see 'About the Authors' at the end of the article).

TIE Scoring Matrix

In order to assist in prioritizing TIE subjects, a scoring matrix may be developed and introduced. This will allow for certain criteria that are specific and directly applicable to the circumstances under investigation to provide a numerical score against which the list of TIEs can be sorted into a more manageable priority list.

The SIO may wish to enlist the services of key members of their team to assist with this process as it can be complex and each category and allocated score will need some reason recorded against it. If possible a Behavioural Investigative Profiler (BIA) should be used to provide added support for drawing up the matrix scores and categories.

A brief example follows:

A 70-year-old male is found battered to death at his home address between 1.00 pm and 3.00 pm. He had recently retired and was rumoured to keep large amounts of cash at his home address, some of which was subsequently found to be missing. He lived alone and had very few associates or close family.

The TIE scoring matrix for this case may look as follows:

Subject Criteria Score (1–10)


The skilful part comes in determining what score each of the criteria should attract. Clearly those TIE subjects who attract the highest scores should get priority to be dealt with.

There are some dos and don’ts with the scoring matrix process, which are as follows:



About the Authors:

Detective Superintendent Tony Cook was a CID officer with Greater Manchester Police for over 31 years until his retirement in 2009. During his time as an SIO, he led a number of high profile investigations including operations into gangland violence at Moss Side, the Bolton murder of a teenage girl in 2002, and the Denton strangling case. He was a trained assessor for promotion and a qualified Authorising Officer under RIPA. Tony received 14 commendations and a first-class BSc Honours degree in social sciences and a Diploma in Social Policy & Criminology from the Open University.

Andy Tattersall, formerly Detective Superintendent in Greater Manchester Police on the Force Major Incident Team, retired in 2007 after 33 years service and became the first ever Support Staff SIO in charge of a new Homicide Support Unit. With over 29 years in CID at all ranks Andy received the Homicide Working Group National Award for his Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Homicide in November 2006.

To see more details about the Senior Investigating Officers' Handbook, or to purchase a copy, click here

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