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

Often, prosecutors will charge an offender with all three crimes, charging felony murder and the lesser included charges of manslaughter. Ivana Hrynkiw | Ihrynkiw@al.com, al.com, "Charges in Marshae Jones case explained," 28 June 2019 These could include confining the technique to violent crimes, as states like California have done for another controversial form of DNA matching called familial search. Megan Molteni, WIRED, "Man Found Guilty in a Murder Mystery Cracked By Cousins’ DNA," 28 June 2019 But Castro cut him off, noting there are separate laws that could be used against those crimes, and the entire stage broke down into crosstalk and shouting. Nicholas Riccardi, The Denver Post, "Takeaways from the first Democratic presidential debate," 27 June 2019 Fisher acknowledged his involvement in the club’s crimes, including the murder and kidnapping, according to court papers. oregonlive.com, "Gypsy Joker Outlaw Motorcycle Club member pleads guilty to racketeering conspiracy," 27 June 2019 Under the act, states removed voters for not voting, moving between voting districts, death, committing a disqualifying crime, or being judged mentally incapacitated. NBC News, "States removed 17 million voters from rolls in two years, government agency says," 27 June 2019 The crisis at the border is very much driven by conditions in the Northern Triangle countries — poverty and crime, corruption, climate change. Jen Kirby, Vox, "The top 3 foreign policy moments of the first Democratic debate," 27 June 2019 His words tend to focus on colorful tales of crime, danger and street life, using as source material his hardscrabble upbringing in Gary, Ind. Mark Richardson, WSJ, "‘Bandana’ by Freddie Gibbs & Madlib Review: Hip-Hop on the Margins," 26 June 2019 The Equal Justice Initiative also focuses on prisoners who may have been wrongly convicted of crimes, been denied a fair trial or tried without effective representation. Paula Rogo, Essence, "Why Michael B. Jordan Is ‘Nervous’ To Take On Role In Film About Wrongfully Convicted Man On Death Row," 26 June 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

2 Jul 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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