in·​ter·​rupt·​er | \ ˌin-tə-ˈrəp-tər How to pronounce interrupter (audio) \
variants: or less commonly interruptor

Definition of interrupter

: one that interrupts especially : a device for interrupting an electric current usually automatically

Examples of interrupter in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The organizer of the bulletproof backpack demonstration was Tio Hardiman, a gang violence interrupter and counselor who knows his way around politics. John Kass,, "Column: Kids with bulletproof backpacks provide bad but real optics for Chicago," 18 Sep. 2020 The boy’s mother – a violence interrupter – told FOX 5 that he’d been caught in the middle of a neighborhood dispute. Fox News, "Davon McNeal shooting: Man charged with murdering 11-year-old DC boy on July 4," 10 July 2020 The mother, Crystal McNeal, had organized the cookout as part of her work for the District as a violence interrupter, trying to persuade young men and teenagers to put down their guns. Peter Hermann, Washington Post, "D.C. police arrest suspect in killing of 11-year-old boy at anti-violence cookout, officials say," 9 July 2020 Louisville officials had introduced the Cure Violence model and street-level interrupters in 2017 following a concerning uptick in shootings and homicides. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "Ex-Louisville violence 'interrupter' sentenced to 17 years in prison in strangulation case," 23 Apr. 2020 Full-time interrupters were paid about $36,000 per year. Billy Kobin, The Courier-Journal, "Ex-Louisville violence 'interrupter' sentenced to 17 years in prison in strangulation case," 23 Apr. 2020 After seven Chicago area communities established interrupters in the early 2000s, a National Institute of Justice evaluation found shootings dropped by up to 73%. Dr. Sanjay Gupta, CNN, "Dr. Sanjay Gupta: The epidemic of gun violence is treatable," 6 Aug. 2019 Last month, the Courier Journal reported that University of Louisville Hospital ended its partnership with No More Red Dots, which makes up much of the city's interrupter staff. Matthew Glowicki, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville violence interrupter suspended months after being indicted on drug charges," 23 Apr. 2019 Communities that have used such programming have recorded 30% to 60% drop in homicides in districts or neighborhoods that have deployed violence interrupters, according to Giffords. Aamer Madhani, USA TODAY, "Joe Biden to call for spending $900 million to curb urban gun violence, aides say," 8 Jan. 2019

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

See More

First Known Use of interrupter

circa 1512, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about interrupter

Time Traveler for interrupter

Time Traveler

The first known use of interrupter was circa 1512

See more words from the same year

Statistics for interrupter

Last Updated

29 Sep 2020

Cite this Entry

“Interrupter.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Oct. 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on interrupter

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for interrupter

Comments on interrupter

What made you want to look up interrupter? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


Test Your Vocabulary

Challenging Vocabulary Quiz Returns!

  • stylized drawing of woman pole vaulting across gap to get trophy
  • Which is a synonym of fuliginous?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?


Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!