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NEWS AND PUBLICATIONS
GLOSSARY TERMS


Title Description
acquit

To find a defendant not guilty in a criminal trial.

adjudication

A judgment or decision of a court or jury regarding a case.

admission

A voluntary acknowledgement of some fact(s) needed, along with proof of other facts, to establish guilt, but short of a confession of guilt, because not acknowledging all facts or elements of a charge (compare "confession").

affidavit

A written or printed declaration or statement under oath.

affirm

The ruling of an appellate court that the judgment of a lower court is correct and should stand.

allegation

An assertion, declaration or positive statement by a party to an action made in a pleading which states what he or she expects to prove.

answer

The defendant's written response to allegations in the case.

appeal

Review of a case by a higher court.

appearance

A coming into the court in person or by filing a paper, as plaintiff, defendant, or legal representative.

appellant

Party appealing a decision or judgment to a higher court.

appellate court

A court having jurisdiction to review the judgment or order of a lower court.

appellee

A party against whom an appeal is taken.

arbitration

The hearing and settlement of a dispute between opposing parties by a third party whose decision the parties have agreed to accept.

arraignment

A court hearing in a criminal case where a defendant is advised of the charges and asked to plead guilty or not guilty (most arraignments in WV are held in magistrate court).

attorney of record

An attorney who represents a party and has entered an appearance in an action (see "counsel").

bail bond

An agreement by a third party to pay a certain sum of money if the defendant fails to appear in court.

bailiff

A court official who maintains courtroom order and jury custody.

battery

An unlawful application of physical force to, or offensive touching of, another without his or her consent.

bench conference

A meeting either on or off the record at the judge's bench between the judge, counsel and sometimes the defendant, out of the hearing of the jury.

bench trial

Trial held before a judge sitting without a jury; jury waived trial.