incriminate

verb
in·​crim·​i·​nate | \ in-ˈkri-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce incriminate (audio) \
incriminated; incriminating

Definition of incriminate

transitive verb

: to charge with or show evidence or proof of involvement in a crime or fault

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Other Words from incriminate

incrimination \ in-​ˌkri-​mə-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce incrimination (audio) \ noun
incriminatory \ in-​ˈkrim-​nə-​ˌtȯr-​ē How to pronounce incriminatory (audio) , -​ˈkri-​mə-​ \ adjective

Synonyms & Antonyms for incriminate

Synonyms

accuse, charge, criminate, defame [archaic], impeach, indict

Antonyms

absolve, acquit, clear, exculpate, exonerate, vindicate

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Did You Know?

Testimony may incriminate a suspect by placing him at the scene of a crime, and incriminating evidence is the kind that strongly links him to it. But the word doesn't always refer to an actual crime. We can say, for instance, that a virus has been incriminated as the cause of a type of cancer, or that video games have been incriminated in the decline in study skills among young people.

Examples of incriminate in a Sentence

Material found at the crime scene incriminates the defendant. in exchange for a reduced sentence, the thief agreed to incriminate his accomplice

Recent Examples on the Web

Fields successfully sued the city, alleging that two Chicago police detectives falsified incriminating evidence and concealed favorable evidence. Tracy Swartz, chicagotribune.com, "Former gang member wrongly convicted of Chicago double murder featured on ‘Death Row Stories’ TV show," 5 July 2019 Nelson’s attorneys have argued detectives coerced him into incriminating himself by promising to help, but Circuit Judge Keith White ruled prosecutors could use the police interview as evidence. Monivette Cordeiro, orlandosentinel.com, "Murder trial begins today for Scott Nelson in kidnap, killing of Jennifer Fulford," 24 June 2019 Kendall's comments come about three months after both Hulu and Netflix released incriminating documentaries revealing the corrupt and unorganized preparations behind Fyre Festival, which was spearheaded by entrepreneur Billy McFarland. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kendall Jenner Responds to Her Fyre Festival Involvement for the First Time," 3 Apr. 2019 That could deflate the hopes of Democrats in Congress and on the 2020 campaign trail that incriminating findings from Mueller would hobble the president’s agenda and re-election bid. Chad Day, The Seattle Times, "Mueller finds no Trump collusion, leaves obstruction open," 25 Mar. 2019 Criminal defense lawyers warn that witnesses may fall into a prosecutorial trap and produce incriminating answers. Joan Biskupic, CNN, "Trump once said pleading the Fifth was for 'the mob' and now he might do it," 7 May 2018 The detective had told Mr. Tankleff during his interrogation that investigators had found forensic evidence incriminating him, and that his father had woken from a coma and accused him of the killing. Maggie Astor, New York Times, "Man Wrongly Convicted of Murdering Parents to Get $10 Million," 20 Apr. 2018 During the 2016 campaign, Mr. Corsi was also a part of a small, informal network of researchers and activists on the margins of Republican politics who were looking for incriminating information about Hillary Clinton, Mr. Trump’s Democratic rival. Shelby Holliday, WSJ, "Conservative Activist Jerome Corsi Says He Expects to Be Indicted in Mueller Probe," 12 Nov. 2018 The president has reportedly told associates Manafort could incriminate him. Sean Illing, Vox, "Manafort is cooperating with Mueller. 8 legal experts explain what that means for Trump.," 14 Sep. 2018

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

circa 1736, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for incriminate

Late Latin incriminatus, past participle of incriminare, from Latin in- + crimin-, crimen crime

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Statistics for incriminate

Last Updated

12 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for incriminate

The first known use of incriminate was circa 1736

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More Definitions for incriminate

incriminate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of incriminate

: to cause (someone) to appear guilty of or responsible for something (such as a crime)

incriminate

verb
in·​crim·​i·​nate | \ in-ˈkri-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce incriminate (audio) \
incriminated; incriminating

Kids Definition of incriminate

: to make (someone) appear guilty of or responsible for something … the story of how it had fallen into his hands incriminated not only him, but his own father …— J. K. Rowling, Goblet of Fire

incriminate

transitive verb
in·​crim·​i·​nate | \ in-ˈkri-mə-ˌnāt How to pronounce incriminate (audio) \
incriminated; incriminating

Legal Definition of incriminate

1 : to charge with involvement in a crime he was incriminated in the conspiracy
2 : to suggest or show involvement of in a crime among the evidence that incriminated him was a box of trigger devices — see also self-incrimination

Other Words from incriminate

incrimination \ in-​ˌkri-​mə-​ˈnā-​shən How to pronounce incrimination (audio) \ noun
incriminatory \ in-​ˈkri-​mə-​nə-​ˌtōr-​ē How to pronounce incriminatory (audio) \ adjective

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Comments on incriminate

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