mis·​tri·​al | \ ˈmis-ˌtrī(-ə)l How to pronounce mistrial (audio) \

Definition of mistrial

: a trial that has no legal effect with regard to one or more of the charges brought against the defendant because of some serious error or prejudicial misconduct in the proceedings or a hung jury

Examples of mistrial in a Sentence

The judge declared a mistrial.

Recent Examples on the Web

The jury was unable to reach a verdict on 10 of the 18 counts, and the judge declared a mistrial on those charges. Recode Staff, Recode, "Recode Daily: Trump’s personal lawyer pleaded guilty and his campaign chief was convicted," 22 Aug. 2018 Some sentences Navarro has imposed since the mistrial have been for time already served. Washington Post, "Judge rejects government bid to reopen activist rancher case," 6 July 2018 The mistrial in 2014 happened after one juror wouldn't convict Ivey. Lavendrick Smith, charlotteobserver, "NC man faces life in prison for fatal Charlotte strip club shooting | Charlotte Observer," 18 Apr. 2018 Another big change since the June mistrial is the shift in the American culture in the wake of #MeToo and Time's Up. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Bill Cosby Paid a $3.38 Million Settlement to One of His Sexual Assault Accusers," 10 Apr. 2018 The mistrial brought an inconclusive end to the two-and-a-half month trial. Barnini Chakraborty, Fox News, "Menendez kicks off re-election bid, slams Trump on immigration," 28 Mar. 2018 Judge Tom Olson denied a defense motion for a mistrial at the end of Hoehn's testimony. Fox News, "The Latest: Trial in pregnant woman's slaying goes to jury," 27 Sep. 2018 Salnick also accused the woman of intentionally making one comment during her testimony Wednesday that was not permissible and was grounds for a mistrial. Marc Freeman, Sun-Sentinel.com, "Deputy convicted of attempted rape," 13 July 2018 That statement prompted an angry objection from Bunk and a motion for mistrial, stating that the prosecutors allowed their witness to divulge information that was supposed to be kept from the jury. Elizabeth Zavala, San Antonio Express-News, "Witness recalls suffocation before San Antonio man cut up, body parts burned," 29 May 2018

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

1628, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of mistrial was in 1628

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English Language Learners Definition of mistrial

law : a trial that is not valid because of an error or because the jury is unable to decide a verdict


mis·​tri·​al | \ ˈmis-ˌtrī-əl How to pronounce mistrial (audio) \

Legal Definition of mistrial

: a trial that terminates without a verdict because of error, necessity, prejudicial misconduct, or a hung jury — see also manifest necessity — compare dismissal sense 2, trial de novo

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More from Merriam-Webster on mistrial

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with mistrial

Nglish: Translation of mistrial for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of mistrial for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about mistrial

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