acquittal

[uh-kwit-l]
noun
1.
the act of acquitting; discharge.
2.
the state of being acquitted; release.
3.
the discharge or settlement of a debt, obligation, etc.
4.
Law. judicial deliverance from a criminal charge on a verdict or finding of not guilty.

Origin:
1400–50; late Middle English a(c)quitaille < Anglo-French; see acquit, -al2

nonacquittal, noun
preacquittal, noun
proacquittal, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
acquittal (əˈkwɪtəl)
 
n
1.  criminal law the deliverance and release of a person appearing before a court on a charge of crime, as by a finding of not guilty
2.  a discharge or release from an obligation, duty, debt, etc

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

acquittal
early 15c., "payment of debt or retribution;" see acquit. Sense of "a release from debt or obligation" is from mid-15c.; that of "freeing from charge or offense" (by legal process) is from 1530s.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

acquittal definition


The judgment of a court that a person charged with a crime is not guilty.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia

acquittal

in criminal law, acknowledgment by the court of the innocence of the defendant or defendants. Such a judgment may be made by a jury in a trial or by a judge who rules that there is insufficient evidence either for conviction or for further proceedings. An acquittal removes all guilt in law. An acquittal "in fact" occurs when a jury finds the defendant not guilty. An acquittal "in law" occurs through the mere operation of law. For instance, if the principal in a case is acquitted, an accessory also is deemed acquitted in law

Learn more about acquittal with a free trial on Britannica.com.

Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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Example sentences
It is thanks to the courts' strict interpretation of this rule that many high-profile cases have ended in acquittal.
Even the prosecution had moved for acquittal during the initial trial, saying it had been persuaded by the defense position.
The friends of acquittal were light hearted for they also knew his last condition.
Conviction does nothing to restore lost innocence, and acquittal seldom vindicates the right.
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