Our Forensic Investigation Unit (FIU) plays a vital role in protecting the communities of the Thames Valley.
The varied nature of our force area, including rural and urban spaces, lends itself to an extremely varied work load for our forensics teams. Interest in forensics roles has grown rapidly in recent decades. Technical advances within the field have enabled forces to increasingly utilise the power of forensics to assist in solving crimes.
We are excited that over the next five years TVP is making a significant investment in our Forensic Service; transforming how we deliver our wide array of forensic disciplines as well as crime scene investigation, creating a forward looking, accredited service that supports effective crime investigation. It is a truly exciting time to join our growing team.
Currently our Forensic Investigations Unit consists of a diverse range of departments. There are approximately 200 staff working within the unit – some based out on Local Policing Areas within operational police stations and others on the various HQ sites. All are civilian staff, although specific roles are designated with powers of entry, search and seizure, by the Chief Constable.
Many are specialists in their fields, and have a wealth of knowledge and experience on such topics as DNA, Fingerprints, Digital, Imaging, Drugs, Marks & Impressions, Particulates and other Trace evidence.
Learn more about our specialist departments
Resilience and Wellbeing
It is important within any role where you may be exposed to difficult, complex situations and/or trauma that you take accountability for your own personal resilience. This can range from recognising what a good work/life balance looks like for you as an individual, to building an awareness of what support is available within the organisation should you need it.
Wellbeing and safety is at the heart of all we do. Whilst you are doing the work that matters, we’ll be supporting you via a wide range of Wellbeing services, partnerships and initiatives. There is more awareness of mental health and trauma support these days, particularly for those in emergency services. Helping process what you have experienced can be as simple as talking about your day with colleagues to getting more targeted support, especially if you have experienced something unpleasant.
TVP and Warwickshire Police piloted the Emergency Services Trauma Intervention Programme (ESTIP), which is now being rolled out nationally and helps identify colleagues who may be experiencing post-traumatic stress. This can lead to counselling being offered, or having shift patterns reviewed until you feel strong again. We have a dedicated Occupational Health Mental Health Nurse in force, plus a team of trained Peer Supporters as well as access to Oscar Kilo; the national wellbeing service for police. We also have a number of active staff support networks and buddy schemes which you will have access to and can be involved with.
Forensic Myths Buster
You need a forensic degree to work in Police Forensics.
We have a range of roles within the Forensic Investigation Unit that do not require a degree. If you have an inquisitive mind-set, attention to detail, able to problem solve and work logically under pressure, then a career in forensics could be for you!
Forensics is all about lab work and you don't need to be a people person.
On the contrary, working with others in addition to technical aptitude is key to the success of the Forensic Unit. Whether that be Crime Scene Investigators who attend the homes of burglary victims, a Forensic Scientist who gives evidence at court, or a Digital Forensic Investigator who liaises with Detectives on fast-time investigations, people matter as much as the evidence.
We have the technology to instantly match fingerprints and enhance blurry CCTV footage.
Whilst we do have cutting edge technology, some of what you see on TV is a little stretched for dramatic effect. The painstaking work that goes into analysis of fingerprints or the processing of digital evidence can seldom be completed within a 60 minute episode! Check out our real-life stories to get a taste of what our amazing team are capable of.
CSIs always wear white suits.
It is only at major scenes you'll see our CSIs wearing white suits, typically they'll wear a uniform of navy tops and black combat style trousers, plus face masks, gloves and shoe-coverings depending on the scene.
Behind the Scenes: TVP Forensics
Below you will find the recording of our “Forensic Investigation Unit” Facebook Live event. Our colleagues working in the unit answered questions from the public regarding the work they do. We hope you enjoy it!
Join our team – Apply today
Discover the latest Forensics opportunities at TVP on our Vacancies portal.