An acquittal is when someone is found not guilty at the end of a criminal trial by a judge or jury. When someone is acquitted the prosecutor was not able to prove the case beyond reasonable doubt.
Even though someone was acquitted they still could face civil actions. The most famous would be that of O.J. Simpson. Even though OJ was acquitted in criminal court, he was found guilty in civil. In the 15th century, this word referred to making payment of outstanding debt. But now the meaning is solely used in the legal sense of being not guilty.« Back to Glossary Index