special circumstances


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special circumstances

n. in criminal cases, particularly homicides, actions of the accused or the situation under which the crime was committed for which state statutes allow or require imposition of a more severe punishment. "Special circumstances" in murder cases may well result in the imposition of the death penalty (in states with capital punishment) for murder or life sentence without possibility of parole. Such circumstances may include: rape, kidnapping or maiming prior to the killing, multiple deaths, killing a police officer or prison guard, or actions showing wanton disregard for life such as throwing a bomb into a restaurant. (See: capital punishment)

References in classic literature ?
But there are certain conditions, Prince, that considering the special circumstances of the case I feel impelled to propose.
I am connected with the General," he said drily, "partly through business affairs, and partly through special circumstances.
It is true that the principles by which that relief is governed are now reduced to a regular system; but it is not the less true that they are in the main applicable to SPECIAL circumstances, which form exceptions to general rules.
The casuists have become a byword of reproach; but their perverted spirit of minute discrimination was the shadow of a truth to which eyes and hearts are too often fatally sealed,--the truth, that moral judgments must remain false and hollow, unless they are checked and enlightened by a perpetual reference to the special circumstances that mark the individual lot.
I began to suspect it from some special circumstances known to me only, which I will explain at once to everyone: they account for everything.
In a report to the council, officers criticised the sculpture - nicknamed the Magic Boat - for being planned for the green belt, without strong enough special circumstances.
A Los Angeles jury deliberated about five hours Tuesday and Wednesday before convicting Johnson of first-degree murder with special circumstances, robbery and burglary.
Kennedy Funding is a commercial real estate lending company that specializes in unconventional financing where speed and attention to special circumstances are critical.
g) other special circumstances in consultation with the pastor
Appearing at Aberystwyth Magistrates' Court yesterday, he admitted a drink-driving charge but pleaded special circumstances, claiming friends spiked his drink without his knowledge.
Appearing at Aberystwyth Magistrates Court yesterday he admitted a drink-driving charge but pleaded special circumstances, claiming friends had spiked his drink without his knowledge.
Among other changes, the waiver process for non-individuals is replaced with a self-certification process and the exception for the sale of a principal residence expands to include sellers whose "last use" of the property sold was their principal residence, even if they do not meet the "two out of the last five years" requirement or one of the special circumstances.

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