Learn more. adj. Sometimes referred to as "to a moral certainty," the phrase is fraught with uncertainty as to meaning, but try: "you better be damned sure." Saying something is proven on a balance of probabilities means that it is more likely than not to have occurred. The phrase “beyond a reasonable doubt” reflects the highest standard when it comes to burden of proof in a legal trial. To explore this concept, consider the following beyond a reasonable doubt definition. For more information on Attorney Tim Zerillo and Zerillo Law, LLC, go to www.GetZerillo.com or call 207.347.6063. 8 Answers. please dont say exactly what it says because i have read it a hundred times i still dont get it. It does not mean that no doubt exists as to the accused's guilt, but only that no Reasonable Doubt is possible from the evidence presented. A reasonable doubt is based on common sense. To win a conviction, the prosecution must convince the jury only that any question as to the truth of the allegations makes no reasonable sense. If the judge or jury is sure you committed the crime based on the evidence, that is enough. beyond a reasonable doubt phrase. The law says 'reasonable doubt,' but I think a defendant's entitled to the shadow of a doubt." The criminal standard is proof beyond a reasonable doubt. beyond a reasonable doubt. Reasonable doubt, in law terminology, refers to the level of surety that a judge and/or juror must have about whether the defendant committed a crime in order to render a guilty verdict. This means that the proposition being presented by the government must be proven to the extent that there is no "reasonable doubt" in the mind of a reasonable person that the defendant is guilty. Beyond a reasonable doubt is the standard of proof that must be met in order to convict a criminal defendant of a crime. doubt meaning: 1. In a criminal case, because the stakes are so high, it is not enough to prove that the defendant is “probably guilty”. does it mean if you suspect the defendant to be guilty after normal suspisions you should find him guilty, or does it mean that if you have any kind of doubt that the defendant did it than you should find him guilty? 1175-1225 Old French douter . Since nothing in this world is ever entirely certain, proving a defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt does not mean proving it beyond all possible doubt. The beyond a reasonable doubt standard is a requirement of due process, but the Constitution neither prohibits trial courts from defining reasonable doubt nor requires them to do so as a matter of course. It is near impossible in most situations. Though “beyond a reasonable doubt” does not require that all doubt be removed, it comes very close. In this video Mickey and Robert discuss what beyond a reasonable means and how it’s important in your case. part of jury instructions in all criminal trials, in which the jurors are told that they can only find the defendant guilty if they are convinced "beyond a reason- able doubt" of his or her guilt. Definition of beyond a reasonable doubt in the Idioms Dictionary. If the doubt raised does affect a "reasonable person's" belief, the jury is not satisfied beyond a "reasonable doubt". What does reasonable doubt mean? This does not mean that the government needs to prove its case beyond all possible doubt, but when compared to the burdens articulated above, the government has a heavy burden to carry when asking a jury to find someone guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. In order for a jury to find someone guilty of a crime, standards must be met. To make a doubt reasonable, jurors must root it in logic, reason, or common sense. Beyond doubt definition: You say that something is beyond doubt or beyond reasonable doubt when you are certain... | Meaning, pronunciation, translations and examples The federal definition of reasonable doubt compares a reasonable doubt to facts which a person would be willing to rely and act without hesitation in the most important of a juror’s own affairs. (a feeling of) not being certain about something, especially about how good or true it is: 2…. So what does this term, used in criminal trials, actually mean? A feeling of uncertainty about the truth, the reality of a situation or presented facts, or nature of something; To be uncertain about a thing; to be undecided in a belief or opinion; Origin . Doubt definition is - to call into question the truth of : to be uncertain or in doubt about. Since the law views all defendants as innocent until proven guilty, the prosecution must demonstrate through the facts and evidence of the case that he or she was the … See more. Beyond a reasonable doubt is the highest standard of proof that must be met in any trial. What does beyond a reasonable doubt expression mean? Does this mean that there must be ZERO doubt that a person had intentionally set out to commit a crime? But what does it actually mean? The jurisprudence of the applicable jurisdiction usually defines the precise meaning of words such as "reasonable" and "doubt" for such purposes. Definition of reasonable doubt in the Definitions.net dictionary. Meaning of reasonable doubt. We all know the saying, “proof beyond a reasonable doubt.” We have heard it in movies, on TV shows, and in popular culture. I hope this helped shed light on the concept of Beyond a Reasonable Doubt. It means that it is probable, i.e., the probability that some event happens is more than 50%. Doubt definition, to be uncertain about; consider questionable or unlikely; hesitate to believe: The police have good reason to doubt his alibi. In our criminal justice system, every defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Reasonable versus Possible Doubt. The judge will instruct a jury in all criminal trials that they can only find the defendant guilty if they are convinced "beyond a reasonable doubt" of his or her guilt. 2.01. There can still be a doubt, but only to the extent that it would not affect a "reasonable person's" belief that the defendant is guilty. It is so engrained in our criminal law that some think it needs no explanation, yet something must be said regarding its meaning. See more. Proof beyond a reasonable doubt means proof that is close to an absolute certainty. It means the evidence is fully satisfied, all the facts are proven and guilt is established. Beyond a reasonable doubt is the highest standard in the American legal system. Reasonable doubt is defined somewhat differently depending on what jurisdiction you’re in, but essentially, a juror can have some doubt in her mind, but it cannot be one that would affect a reasonable person’s “moral certainty” that a defendant is guilty. The state of Texas has their own explanation of the “beyond a reasonable doubt” law. If asked to provide a percentage, most people equate the standard with a requirement that you be 95-99 percent certain of a defendant’s guilt before voting to convict under a “reasonable doubt… Beyond a Reasonable Doubt. This article deals with civil standards of proof. what does beyond reasonable doubt mean? Note that ‘beyond a reasonable doubt’ does not mean that the prosecution must eliminate all possible uncertainty about a person’s innocence. When a case must be proved to this standard, it means that if a reasonable person were presented with the evidence, he or she would draw the inescapable conclusion, without any doubt, that the accused was guilty of the crime. "A reasonable doubt is not an imaginary or frivolous doubt. Reasonable. Instead, the phrase means the established facts of the case (e.g. "What does the expression beyond a reasonable doubt mean? Definitions by the largest Idiom Dictionary. reasonable suspicion, probable cause, as well as clear and convincing evidence) led the court to one logical conclusion: the defendant is guilty. How the Australian Capital Territory law applies the standard of proof . Beyond A Reasonable Doubt beyond a reasonable doubt The standard in a criminal case that must be met by the prosecution in order to convict the defendant. The notion of reasonable doubt is inextricably intertwined with the presumption of innocence. The prosecution has to prove its case beyond that "reasonable doubt". The Supreme Court of Canada has offered a number of guidelines applicable to the concept of reasonable doubt. What does beyond a reasonable doubt expression mean? Definitions Doubt. The Meaning of Proof Beyond a Reasonable Doubt The standard of proof in a criminal case is known as proof beyond a reasonable doubt , which means that in order for a jury to convict a defendant in a criminal trial, they must believe that the prosecution has presented evidence that is so compelling, that no one other than the defendant is responsible for the crime. The term “reasonable doubt” has a specific meaning in criminal law. “ Reasonable Doubt ” Does Not Mean “ Any Doubt ” The Supreme Court of Canada has ruled that jurors should receive instruct ion that “ reasonable doubt ” cannot consist of doubt based on sympathy for the accused or any prejudice, for whatever reason, for or against anyone involved in the case. Attorney Ruth Ann Hepler explains the definition of reasonable doubt.Political advertisement paid for by Ruth Ann Hepler for County Court Judge, Group 12. Information and translations of reasonable doubt in the most comprehensive dictionary definitions resource on the web. Keep in mind, proving beyond a reasonable doubt doesn’t mean that there is absolutely no doubt the defendant is innocent. Atticus proves there is reasonable doubt when he shows the court that Tom can't move his left arm. How to use doubt in a sentence. They have been satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that you're guilty. The definition is somewhat circular in that proof beyond a reasonable doubt is defined as an abiding conviction of guilt which does not waver. Synonym Discussion of doubt. It does not mean zero doubt, as that's an impossible standard. According to the Texas penal code, this is classified as “proof beyond a reasonable doubt.” The Texas transcript continues: Sec. 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