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Forcible possession; a grasping, snatching, or putting in possession.

In Criminal Law, a seizure is the forcible taking of property by a government law enforcement official from a person who is suspected of violating, or is known to have violated, the law. A Search Warrant usually must be presented to the person before his property is seized, unless the circumstances of the seizure justify a warrantless Search and Seizure. For example, the police may seize a pistol in the coat pocket of a person arrested during a Robbery without presenting a warrant because the search and seizure is incident to a lawful arrest. Certain federal and state laws provide for the seizure of particular property that was used in the commission of a crime or that is illegal to possess, such as explosives used in violation of federal law or illegal narcotics.

In the law of civil practice, the term refers to the act performed by an officer of the law under court order when she takes into custody the property of a person against whom a court has rendered a judgment to pay a certain amount of money to another. The property is seized so that it can be sold under the authority of the court to satisfy the judgment. Property can also be seized if a substantial likelihood exists that a defendant is concealing or removing property from the jurisdiction of the court so that in the event a judgment is rendered against her, the property cannot be used to pay the judgment. By attaching or seizing a defendant's property, the court prevents her from perpetrating a Fraud on the courts.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


n. the taking by law enforcement officers of potential evidence in a criminal case. The constitutional limitations on seizure are the same as for search. Thus, evidence seized without a search warrant or without "probable cause" to believe a crime has been committed and without time to get a search warrant, cannot be admitted in court, nor can evidence traced through the illegal seizure. (See: search and seizure, search warrant, fruit of the poisonous tree)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

SEIZURE, practice. The act of taking possession of the property of a person condemned by the judgment of a competent tribunal, to pay a certain sum of money, by a sheriff, constable, or other officer, lawfully authorized thereto, by virtue of an execution, for the purpose of having such property sold according to law to satisfy the judgment. By seizure is also meant the taking possession of goods for a violation of a public law; as the taking possession of a ship for attempting an illicit trade. 2 Cranch, 18 7; 6 Cowen, 404; 4 Wheat. 100; 1 Gallis. 75; 2 Wash. C. C. 127, 567.
     2. The seizure is complete as soon as the goods are within the power of the officer. 3 Rawle's Rep. 401; 16 Johns. Rep. 287; 2 Nott & McCord, 392; 2 Rawle's Rep. 142; Wats. on Sher. 172; Com. Dig. Execution, C 5.
     3. The taking of part of the goods in a house, however, by virtue of a fieri facias in the name of the whole, is a good seizure of all. 8 East, R. 474. As the seizure must be made by virtue of an execution, it is evident that it cannot be made after the return day. 2 Caine's Rep. 243; 4 John. R. 450. Vide Door; House; Search Warrant.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Panayiotopoulos syndrome is characterized by seizures that begin in early childhood and occur infrequently with vomiting and eye and head deviation, some progressing to generalized seizures. They usually remit after one to two years.
Population studied Adults with chronic alcoholism who presented to either of 2 urban emergency departments were enrolled if they had a witnessed generalized seizure. Over 21 months, 186 of 229 total patients were enrolled in the study: 78 patients consented on presentation; 108 patients consented only after treatment had been administered.
Although anticonvulsant therapy was initiated, he had another brief generalized seizure, after which he remained agitated and intermittently disoriented.
In contrast, our study concluded that generalized seizure was the most predominant type and generalised tonic clonic was the most common subtype.
About one-third of all epilepsies are idiopathic.1 The incidence of idiopathic generalized seizures declines from 15/100,000 at age less than1 year to 10/100,000 cases at 14 years and remains so in adult life until 65 years when incidence may rise again.2 By convention, adult onset epilepsy should be considered epilepsy beginning after age 20 years, or according to some after 25 years.
His medication and medical condition may have reduced his seizure threshold sufficiently so that a single topical application of lindane induced a generalized seizure. Since several factors may have independently combined at one instant to induce the patient's seizure, we will review each one separately.
(10,11) In the present study, 86.4% patients had generalized seizure that is similar to the other studies.
When the electrical disturbance affects the entire brain, it is termed a generalized seizure. If only part of the brain is affected, it is called a partial seizure.
The first related the case of a 13-year-old girl with no history of seizures who had a generalized seizure while playing Super Mario Brothers.
R.T., a 47-year-old male patient followed at the Riverside Family Practice Center, was admitted to the hospital on January 4, 1989, after a generalized seizure. He had noted fever, chills, and malaise for approximately 2 days prior to admission.
Among the patients with abnormal EEG, features suggestive of generalized seizure disorder was present in 39 cases (60.94%) of which generalized spikes were present in 11 cases, generalized polyspikes in 3 cases, generalized slowing in 20 cases, both slow and spike waves in 2 cases and generalized 3 Hz spike wave activity in 3 cases.
In a generalized seizure, the electroencephalogram shows discharges from everywhere in the brain.

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