double jeopardy


Definition of double jeopardy

1 : the putting of a person on trial for an offense for which he or she has previously been put on trial under a valid charge : two adjudications for one offense
2 : considerable danger or trouble from two sources

Examples of double jeopardy in a Sentence

constitutional protections against double jeopardy
Recent Examples on the Web Wronko says a petition for the New Jersey Supreme Court to hear his appeal based on double jeopardy principles is pending. Gabrielle Chung,, "Melrose Place Actress Amy Locane Resentenced to 8 Years in Prison for Fatal DWI Crash," 17 Sep. 2020 Locane's attorney has argued unsuccessfully over re-sentencing violating double jeopardy, a clause in the fifth amendment of the constitution that prevents anyone from being prosecuted twice for the same crime. Rosy Cordero,, "Melrose Place actress Amy Locane sent back to prison for fatal 2010 DUI crash," 17 Sep. 2020 Last year, New York changed its double jeopardy law. Harry Litman Los Angeles Times (tns), Star Tribune, "New York's investigations may be the best bet for holding Trump accountable," 31 Aug. 2020 Wilson was never charged and tried, so double jeopardy was not an issue. Jim Salter, USA TODAY, "Missouri prosecutor: No charges for officer who fatally shot Michael Brown in 2014," 30 July 2020 That means he cannot be retried for it on double jeopardy grounds, the defense and prosecution agreement notwithstanding. Bill Rankin, ajc, "Ga. Supreme Court: Not guilty means not guilty in DeKalb murder case," 16 June 2020 The issue is whether Ted Wafer's constitutional rights against double jeopardy were violated when he was convicted of second-degree murder and manslaughter in the death of 19-year-old Renisha McBride. Ed White, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan Supreme Court revisiting 2013 Dearborn Heights porch shooting case," 10 June 2020 The way Judge James Linn saw it, the only way double jeopardy would apply is if Smollett was legally punished for what had happened to him since he was charged in connection with the January 2019 incident in downtown Chicago. USA TODAY, "After new indictment, judge tosses out Jussie Smollett's double jeopardy claim," 20 May 2016 Smollett’s attorneys also have filed a motion in Cook County court arguing that the refiling of charges violated protections against being charged twice for the same crime, known as double jeopardy. Washington Post, "Actor Jussie Smollett pleads not guilty to restored charges," 24 Feb. 2020

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

1862, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for double jeopardy

Time Traveler

The first known use of double jeopardy was in 1862

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Statistics for double jeopardy

Last Updated

30 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Double jeopardy.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Oct. 2020.

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More Definitions for double jeopardy

double jeopardy


English Language Learners Definition of double jeopardy

US, law : the act of causing a person to be put on trial two times for the same crime

double jeopardy


Legal Definition of double jeopardy

: the prosecution of a person for an offense for which he or she has already been prosecuted — see also jeopardy — compare merger sense 3

Note: The Fifth Amendment to the Constitution states that no person shall “be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb.” The double jeopardy clause bars second prosecutions after either acquittal or conviction, and prohibits multiple punishments for the same offense.

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