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The legal and formal certification of the innocence of a person who has been charged with a crime.

Acquittals in fact take place when a jury finds a verdict of not guilty. Acquittals in law take place by operation of law such as when a person has been charged as an Accessory to the crime of Robbery and the principal has been acquitted.


n. what an accused criminal defendant receives if he/she is found not guilty. It is a verdict (a judgment in a criminal case) of not guilty. (See: acquit)


noun absolutio, absolution, acquitment, acquittance, amnesty, clearance, compurgation, discharge, dismissal, exculpation, exoneration, favorable verdict, letting off, liberatio, liberation, pardon, purgation, quittance, release, remission, reprieve, restoration, verdict of not guilty, vindication
Associated concepts: acquittal by a jury
Foreign phrases: Paribus sententiis reus absolvitur.When the opinions are equal, where the court is equally divided, the defendant is acquitted.
See also: absolution, compurgation, condonation, discharge, emancipation, exoneration, immunity, impunity, liberation, pardon, payment, release, remission, remittance, reprieve, respite, satisfaction, waiver


a decision of a court that a defendant prosecuted for a criminal offence is not guilty. It also describes the Scottish verdict of NOT PROVEN.

ACQUITTAL, contracts. A release or discharge from an obligation or engagement. According to Lord Coke there are three kinds of acquittal, namely; 1. By deed, when the party releases the obligation; 2. By prescription; 3. By tenure. Co. Lit. 100, a.

ACQUITTAL, crim. law practice. The absolution of a party charged with a crime or misdemeanor.
    2. Technically speaking, acquittal is - the absolution of a party accused on a trial before a traverse jury. 1 N. & M. 36; 3 McCord, 461.
    3. Acquittals are of two kinds, in fact and in law. The former takes place when the jury upon trial finds a verdict of not guilty; the latter when a man is charged merely as an accessary, and the principal has been acquitted. 2 Inst. 384. An acquittal is a bar to any future prosecution for the offence alleged in the first indictment.

References in periodicals archive ?
Following the conclusion of the prosecution's case earlier this month, defense teams are all entitled to make an application for acquittal.
The senator also pointed out the SC ruling that allowed the remains of late dictator Ferdinand Marcos to be buried at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, the CA acquittal of Janet Lim-Napoles of serious illegal detention charges, the Court of Tax Appeals' dismissal of tax raps against Jeane Napoles, and the Sandiganbayan's order to release former Senator Jinggoy Estrada on bail.
2d at 774 (observing most courts refuse to interpret jury's silence as implied acquittal unless logic requires); supra note 26 (citing cases where courts only implied acquittals if logic required).
On Thursday, the court slightly reduced the sentences of several others, and reversed the acquittal of Antonio Toro.
The acquittals were filed by the Swedish National Economic Crimes Bureau, the company added.
The perplexing issue of acquittals in the fin-de-siecle assize court was nothing less than the failure of the state system of justice to displace a popular system of justice.
It is only possible to choose between these theoretical possibilities--the trial distortion theory and the accuracy hypothesis--by observing particular criminal justice systems at work; accordingly, this Article interprets the patterns of guilty pleas and acquittals in the federal criminal justice system.
Fitterman suggested that, even after an acquittal, some might be more inclined to buy a CD than to pursue the personal, in-the-moment experience that comes with a concert ticket.
The parliamentary Home Affairs Committee said the new rules should also apply to acquittals, which would mean the men cleared of murdering Stephen Lawrence could face a new prosecution.
A lack of appropriate community policing and community relations efforts accounted for smoldering, antipolice neighborhoods that erupted into rioting immediately following the 1992 Simi Valley acquittals.
The most sensational of the four were the March 9 and May 14 acquittals by Michigan juries of Dr.
However, the district court judge granted acquittals for two of the dentists and a new trial to the third.