crime

noun
\ ˈkrīm How to pronounce crime (audio) \

Definition of crime

1 : an illegal act for which someone can be punished by the government especially : a gross violation of law
2 : a grave offense especially against morality
3 : criminal activity efforts to fight crime
4 : something reprehensible, foolish, or disgraceful It's a crime to waste good food.

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Other Words from crime

crimeless \ ˈkrīm-​ləs How to pronounce crimeless (audio) \ adjective

Choose the Right Synonym for crime

offense, sin, vice, crime, scandal mean a transgression of law. offense applies to the infraction of any law, rule, or code. at that school no offense went unpunished sin implies an offense against moral or religious law. the sin of blasphemy vice applies to a habit or practice that degrades or corrupts. regarded gambling as a vice crime implies a serious offense punishable by the law of the state. the crime of murder scandal applies to an offense that outrages the public conscience. a career ruined by a sex scandal

Examples of crime in a Sentence

She paid dearly for her crimes. evidence that helped them solve the crime He was punished for a crime that he didn't commit. the recent increase in violent crime Being single is not a crime. There's no greater crime than forgetting your anniversary.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Those are the ultimate—and classic—partners in crime. Elizabeth Gulino, House Beautiful, "Jennifer Lopez Turns to Joanna Gaines for Help Remodeling Her $6.6 Million Malibu Beach House," 4 Mar. 2019 When hearing the news, Hoda was ecstatic that Jenna would be her new partner in crime on the show. Kayla Keegan, Good Housekeeping, "'Today' Host Kathie Lee Gifford Reacts to Jenna Bush Hager Replacing Her," 26 Feb. 2019 Now, the streaming service is adding a new docuseries that will delight true-crime fans. Kelly O'sullivan, Country Living, "'Unsolved Mysteries' Is Getting a Netflix Reboot So Prepare to Have Nightmares Forever," 24 Jan. 2019 One possible explanation for the racial disparities: Police tend to patrol high-crime neighborhoods, which are disproportionately black. German Lopez, Vox, "After a mall shooting, police killed the wrong person — and the real shooter remains at large," 26 Nov. 2018 Studies have also found that the more undocumented immigrants there are in an area, the less violent crime there is. Jennifer Wright, Harper's BAZAAR, "Mollie Tibbetts's Murder Proves We Need the Violence Against Women Act More Than Ever," 30 Aug. 2018 Take it from someone who knows: There are only so many true crime podcasts to work through. Jenni Miller, SELF, "7 Ways to Find Truly Sexy Erotica, According to Someone Who Reads Tons of It," 22 Feb. 2019 Interpol isn’t the international crime-fighting agency of Hollywood imagination. The Editorial Page, WSJ, "Fixing Interpol’s Dictator Problem," 10 Feb. 2019 Getty ImagesAlexander Tamargo Out today, January 18, a new Netflix series on Carmen Sandiego is rewriting Sandiego in an animated series, making her a crime-fighting hero. Katherine J. Igoe, Marie Claire, "Gina Rodriguez Posed as Carmen Sandiego to Celebrate the Launch Of Her Netflix Series," 18 Jan. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'crime.' 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 crime

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for crime

Middle English, "wrongdoing, sin," borrowed from Anglo-French, going back to Latin crīmin-, crīmen "accusation, charge, indictment, source of an accusation, misdeed, offense," probably from crī-, variant stem of cernere "to sift, discern, decide, determine" + -men, resultative noun suffix (probably originally "decision," then "judicial decision, indictment") — more at certain entry 1

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Statistics for crime

Last Updated

12 Mar 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for crime

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

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More Definitions for crime

crime

noun

English Language Learners Definition of crime

: an illegal act for which someone can be punished by the government
: activity that is against the law : illegal acts in general
: an act that is foolish or wrong

crime

noun
\ ˈkrīm How to pronounce crime (audio) \

Kids Definition of crime

1 : the act of doing something forbidden by law or the failure to do an act required by law
2 : an act that is foolish or wrong It's a crime to waste food.

crime

noun
\ ˈkrīm How to pronounce crime (audio) \

Legal Definition of crime

1 : conduct that is prohibited and has a specific punishment (as incarceration or fine) prescribed by public law — compare delict, tort
2 : an offense against public law usually excluding a petty violation — see also felony, misdemeanor

Note: Crimes in the common-law tradition were originally defined primarily by judicial decision. For the most part, common-law crimes are now codified. There is a general principle “nullum crimen sine lege,” that there can be no crime without a law. A crime generally consists of both conduct, known as the actus reus, and a concurrent state of mind, known as the mens rea.

3 : criminal activity

History and Etymology for crime

Middle French, from Latin crimen fault, accusation, crime

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More from Merriam-Webster on crime

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with crime

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for crime

Spanish Central: Translation of crime

Nglish: Translation of crime for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of crime for Arabic Speakers

Comments on crime

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