confess(redirected from confessional)
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v. in criminal law, to voluntarily state that one is guilty of a criminal offense. This admission may be made to a law enforcement officer or in court either prior to or upon arrest, or after the person is charged with a specific crime. A confession must be truly voluntary (not forced by threat, torture, or trickery) and cannot be admitted in trial unless the defendant has been given the so-called Miranda warnings at the time of arrest or when it is clear he/she is the prime suspect, all based on the 5th Amendment prohibition against self-incrimination. The Miranda warnings are: the right to remain silent, the right to have an attorney present and that one can be appointed, and that his/her statements may be used against the defendant in court. (See: confession, Miranda warning, self-incrimination, Bill of Rights)
confessverb acknowledge, acknowledge one's guilt, admit, admit guilt, bare, come forth, concede, declare, disburden one's conscience, disclose, divulge, expose, fateri, give evidence, inculpate, lay open, make a confession, make solemn affirmation, own up, purge oneself, reveal, tell all, turn state's evidence, utter, yield
Associated concepts: confess guilt, confess judgment, conness participation
Foreign phrases: Qui tacet non utique fatetur, sed tamen verum est eum non negare.He who is silent does not conness, but it is nevertheless true that he does not deny.
See also: acknowledge, admit, attest, avow, bare, betray, certify, concede, disclose, inform, recognize, reveal, verify