Capital Punishment in the United States: A Documentary History

By Bryan Vila ; Cynthia Morris | Go to book overview
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Glossary

Aliunde. From another source.

Allocution. Court's formal inquiry into whether there is legal cause for not pronouncing judgment against a defendant. Often used to provide a defendant with an opportunity to make a statement on his or her own behalf and present evidence that might mitigate his sentence.

Amicus curiae. Friend of the court. A party with strong interest in, or views on, a matter at trial who is not actually a party to the action may petition the court for permission to file a brief.

Arguendo. In the course of argument. A hypothetical illustration or statement made by a judge or attorney arguing a point is said to be made arguendo.

Certiorari. A writ issued by a superior court requiring an inferior court to provide a certified record of a case it has tried. The higher court issues the writ in order to inspect the lower court's proceedings for irregularities. Certiorari usually refers to the U.S. Supreme Court's use of the writ to choose which cases it wishes to hear.

Comity. In general, courts in one state or jurisdiction respect the laws and judicial decisions of other states and jurisdictions as a matter of courtesy, deference, and mutual respect even though they may not be legally required to do so. This is known as the principle of comity.

Common law. The case law and statutory law developed in England and the American colonies before the American revolution.

Deontological ethics. Ethics that emphasize principles of right and wrong independent of any good or bad consequences that may result from applying those principles.

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