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Writ of Certiorari

Order by the Supreme Court directing a lower court to send up the records of a case for review

Brief

a written statement by an attorney that summarizes a case and the laws and rulings that support it

Majority Opinion

a court opinion reflecting the views of the majority of the judges

Disenting Opinion

a Supreme Court opinion by one or more justices in the minority who oppose the ruling.

Felony

a crime more serious than a misdemeanor and punishable by imprisonment for more than one year or death

Misdemeanor

a crime or offense that is less serious than a felony; any minor misbehavior or misconduct

Perjury

criminal offense of making false statements under oath

Subpoena

a court order requiring appearance and/or testimony

Docket

(law) the calendar of a court

Grand Jury

a group of citizens that decides whether there is sufficient evidence to accuse someone of a crime

Indictment

a written accusation charging a party with committing a crime which is drawn up by the prosecuting attorney and issued by a grand jury

Plea Bargain

Agreement between a prosecutor and a defendant that the defendant will plead guilty to a lesser offense to avoid having to stand trial for a more serious offense.

Capital Offence

crime punishable by death

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