Definition of acquit
1 : to discharge completely (as from an accusation or obligation) The court acquitted the prisoner.
2 : to conduct (oneself) usually satisfactorily especially under stress The recruits acquitted themselves like veterans.
Examples of acquit in a Sentence
The jury acquitted the defendant because there wasn't enough evidence to convict him of the crime.
acquitted of the robbery charge after proving he was nowhere near the scene of the crime
Recent Examples of acquit from the Web
In May, Hubbard's lawyers asked the five-judge court to acquit him or order a new trial.
Anderson was acquitted after spending nearly five years in jail.
He was acquitted in April of aggravated criminal sodomy of a 13-year-old girl.
Last week, the officer who killed him was acquitted.
The jury's decision not to convict Dominique Heaggan-Brown comes just days after Philando Castile's killer was acquitted.
A jury has acquitted another police officer who fatally shot a black civilian, the second ruling in favor of an officer in two weeks.
A judge acquitted Floyd of murder in Robinson’s killing but convicted him of second-degree murder in Hines’ death.
Parker ultimately was acquitted of the excessive force charges because two federal trials ended with juries unable to reach unanimous verdicts.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'acquit'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Synonym Discussion of acquit
exculpate, absolve, exonerate, acquit, vindicate mean to free from a charge. exculpate implies a clearing from blame or fault often in a matter of small importance. exculpating himself from the charge of overenthusiasm absolve implies a release either from an obligation that binds the conscience or from the consequences of disobeying the law or committing a sin. cannot be absolved of blame exonerate implies a complete clearance from an accusation or charge and from any attendant suspicion of blame or guilt. exonerated by the investigation acquit implies a formal decision in one's favor with respect to a definite charge. voted to acquit the defendant vindicate may refer to things as well as persons that have been subjected to critical attack or imputation of guilt, weakness, or folly, and implies a clearing effected by proving the unfairness of such criticism or blame. her judgment was vindicated
ACQUIT Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of acquit for English Language Learners
: to decide that someone is not guilty of a crime
ACQUIT Defined for Kids
Definition of acquit for Students
1 : to declare innocent of a crime or of wrongdoing
2 : to behave in a certain way You are to acquit yourselves as young ladies and gentlemen.
Legal Definition of acquit
: to discharge completely: as a : to release from liability for a debt or other obligation —usually used in agreements forever release, acquit, and discharge each other b : to absolve (a criminal defendant) of a charge by judicial process c : to clear of wrongdoing the fact…does not acquit them of misrepresentation — In re Hiller, 694 P.2d 540 (1985)
: to absolve a defendant of criminal liability must acquit if any reasonable doubt existed — Commonwealth v. Gagliardi, 638 N.E.2d 20 (1994) — compare convict
Origin and Etymology of acquit
Old French acquiter to pay off, absolve, acquit, from a-, prefix marking causation + quite free (of an obligation)
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