arrest

verb
ar·​rest | \ ə-ˈrest How to pronounce arrest (audio) \
arrested; arresting; arrests

Definition of arrest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : seize, capture specifically : to take or keep in custody by authority of law Police arrested the suspect.
2a : to bring to a stop Sickness arrested his activities.
b : check, slow Its growth was arrested.
c : to make inactive an arrested tumor
3 : to catch suddenly and engagingly arrest attention

arrest

noun

Definition of arrest (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : the taking or detaining in custody by authority of law The investigation led to his arrest.
2a : the act of stopping
b : the condition of being stopped or inactive — compare cardiac arrest
under arrest
: in legal custody The suspect was placed under arrest.

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Other Words from arrest

Verb

arrester or less commonly arrestor \ -​ˈres-​tər How to pronounce arrestor (audio) \ noun
arrestment \ -​ˈres(t)-​mənt How to pronounce arrestment (audio) \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for arrest

Synonyms: Verb

apprehend, bust [slang], collar, nab, nail, nick [British slang], pick up, pinch, pull in, restrain, run in, seize

Synonyms: Noun

apprehension, arrestment, bust [slang], collar, pinch

Antonyms: Verb

discharge

Antonyms: Noun

discharge

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Examples of arrest in a Sentence

Verb

The police arrested him on drug charges. The police officer said, “I'm arresting you in the name of the law.” The drugs can't arrest the disease's progress, but they can slow it down considerably.

Noun

The police are investigating the case but they have not yet made any arrests. She was charged with resisting arrest. The information has led to the arrest of three suspects.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Bowers was arrested in 2016 following a two-year investigation. Mike Nolan, Daily Southtown, "Will County jail deaths ruled as being from natural causes, sheriff says," 8 June 2019 Two of the men, 23-year-old John Poh and 22-year-old Jordon Byrd, were arrested in their home state of Tennessee on Wednesday in the area of Murfreesboro. Andy Nguyen, latimes.com, "4 men arrested in Glendale triple-homicide investigation," 6 June 2019 He was arrested in Vienna in March 2014, released on $174 million bail, and has been contesting his extradition to the U.S. ever since. NBC News, "Lawyer: Dmytro Firtash could be extradited to U.S. by early July," 6 June 2019 Little was arrested at a Louisville homeless shelter in 2012, then extradited to California. Max Londberg, Cincinnati.com, "Serial killer who strangled dozens of women confesses to killing two Cincinnati victims," 6 June 2019 In April 2015, Southall was arrested during a Black Lives Matter protest downtown, a protest that started in front of police headquarters. Carol Robinson | Crobinson@al.com, al.com, "Well-known activist Mercutio Southall charged in Birmingham killing," 6 June 2019 Efrain Francisco Sebastian was located and arrested in Brookings, South Dakota on our Active Warrant for Leaving the Scene of a Crash Involving Death. Wayne K. Roustan, sun-sentinel.com, "Fatal hit-run investigation leads Boca Raton police to South Dakota," 5 June 2019 In May, a third person was arrested in connection with the April 12 incident, according to police. Garrett Andrews | The Bulletin, oregonlive.com, "Adults charged after Bend teen fight video goes viral," 4 June 2019 In September, dozens were arrested at a nearby poultry farm. Kurtis Alexander, SFChronicle.com, "Petaluma duck farm stormed by hundreds of animal rights activists, 98 arrested," 3 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

View Sample Sign Up Now No arrests have been made yet. Amy Gunia, Time, "Australia Seizes More Than $800 Million Worth of Meth In Its Largest-Ever Bust," 7 June 2019 In interviews after his arrest, Brocksom told investigators his daughter told him Beata Brocksom had molested her, which led to his driving to Gurnee from the Wisconsin Dells in the middle of the night to ask her about the accusations. Jim Newton, Lake County News-Sun, "Man convicted of Gurnee murder last fall might finally be sentenced next month," 7 June 2019 Ridgell would neither confirm nor deny whether any arrests were made at YoYo Massage. Chris Mayhew, Cincinnati.com, "Second Boone County massage parlor investigated by police," 5 June 2019 After his arrest, Anderson admitted to killing Hawkins, police said. Dallas News, "18-year-old arrested in shooting death of DeSoto High classmate, football star," 5 June 2019 No one was injured in the explosion, but as of late May, no arrests had been made. Wired Staff, WIRED, "The One Free Press Coalition Spotlights Journalists Under Attack," 3 June 2019 The arrests were made late Saturday night and early Sunday. Julhas Alam, The Seattle Times, "Bangladesh police arrest building owners over fatal blaze," 31 Mar. 2019 The arrests were made possible by a new policy, implemented in June, that requires the government to check both the criminal history and immigration status of any would-be sponsor — and of all other adults in the household. Dara Lind, Vox, "Finding homes for immigrant kids is hard. Trump’s making it harder — by arresting their relatives.," 21 Sep. 2018 The police have replaced the officer in charge of the armory, but so far no arrests have been made in the theft. Andrew Moseman, Popular Mechanics, "Thieves Replaced Paraguay Police Rifles With Toy Fakes," 27 Aug. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'arrest.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of arrest

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

History and Etymology for arrest

Verb and Noun

Middle English aresten, from Anglo-French arester to stop, arrest, from Vulgar Latin *arrestare, from Latin ad- + restare to remain — more at rest

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Statistics for arrest

Last Updated

10 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for arrest

The first known use of arrest was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for arrest

arrest

verb

English Language Learners Definition of arrest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to use the power of the law to take and keep (someone, such as a criminal)
formal : to stop the progress or movement of (something)
formal : to attract and hold the attention of (someone or something)

arrest

noun

English Language Learners Definition of arrest (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of legally taking and keeping someone (such as a criminal) : the act of arresting someone
medical : an occurrence in which a part of the body suddenly stops working

arrest

verb
ar·​rest | \ ə-ˈrest How to pronounce arrest (audio) \
arrested; arresting

Kids Definition of arrest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to take or keep control over (someone) by authority of law She was arrested on suspicion of robbery.
2 : to stop the progress or movement of : check arrest a disease
3 : to attract and hold the attention of But I was suddenly arrested by a sight that only Grandma and I saw.— Richard Peck, A Year Down Yonder

arrest

noun

Kids Definition of arrest (Entry 2 of 2)

: the act of taking or holding a person by authority of law
ar·​rest | \ ə-ˈrest How to pronounce arrest (audio) \

Medical Definition of arrest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to bring to a standstill or state of inactivity arrested tuberculosis arrested labor

intransitive verb

: to undergo cardiac arrest the…patient has arrested while being transported to surgery— Wayne Fields

Other Words from arrest

arrestment noun

arrest

noun

Medical Definition of arrest (Entry 2 of 2)

: the condition of being stopped developmental arrest — see cardiac arrest — compare cure entry 1 sense 1, remission

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arrest

noun
ar·​rest | \ ə-ˈrest\

Legal Definition of arrest

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: the restraining and seizure of a person whether or not by physical force by someone acting under authority (as a police officer) in connection with a crime in such a manner that it is reasonable under the circumstances for the person to believe that he or she is not free to leave — see also miranda warnings, probable cause at cause sense 2, warrant — compare stop
citizen's arrest
: an arrest made not by a law officer but by any citizen who derives the authority to arrest from the fact of being a citizen

Note: Under common law, a citizen may make an arrest for any felony actually committed, or for a breach of the peace committed in his or her presence.

civil arrest
: the arrest and detention of a defendant in a civil suit until he or she posts bail or pays the judgment — see also capias ad respondendum

Note: Civil arrest is restricted or prohibited in most states.

custodial arrest
: an arrest of a person accompanied by or followed by taking the person into custody
false arrest
: an arrest made without legal authority

called also unlawful arrest

Note: If a person is taken into custody, no matter how briefly, a false arrest is also false imprisonment.

pretext arrest \ ˈprē-​ˌtekst-​ \
: the arrest of a person for a minor crime (as a traffic violation) for the real purpose of getting an opportunity to investigate (as through a search) the person's possible involvement in a more serious crime for which there are no lawful grounds to make an arrest

called also pretextual arrest

unlawful arrest
: false arrest in this entry
under arrest
: in the condition of being restrained under legal authority

Legal Definition of arrest (Entry 2 of 2)

: to place under arrest

Other Words from arrest

arrester also arrestor noun

History and Etymology for arrest

Noun

Middle French arest, from arester to stop, seize, arrest, ultimately from Latin ad to, at + restare to stay

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More from Merriam-Webster on arrest

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with arrest

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for arrest

Spanish Central: Translation of arrest

Nglish: Translation of arrest for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of arrest for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about arrest

Comments on arrest

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