Glossary
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


rape (common law)
unlawful sexual intercourse with a female without her consent. Today, rape statutes in a number of jurisdictions encompass unlawful sexual intercourse between members of the same gender.

rape shield laws
statutes intended to protect victims of rape by limiting a defendant's in-court use of a victim's sexual history.

real property
land and fixtures.

reasonable doubt
(in legal proceedings) an actual and substantial doubt arising from the evidence, from the facts or circumstances shown by the evidence, or from the lack of evidence. Also, that state of the case which, after the entire comparison and consideration of all the evidence, leaves the minds of the jurors in such a condition that they cannot say they feel an abiding conviction of the truth of the charge.

reasonable doubt standard
that standard of proof necessary for conviction in criminal trials.

reasonable force
a degree of force that is appropriate in a given situation and is not excessive. The minimum degree of force necessary to protect oneself, ones' property, a third party, or the property of another in the face of a substantial threat.

reasonable person
a person who acts with common sense and who has the mental capacity of an average, normal, sensible human being. The reasonable person criterion requires that the assumptions and ideas upon which a defendant acted must have been reasonable, in that the circumstances as they appeared to the defendant would have created the same beliefs in the mind of an ordinary person.

reasonable provocation
see adequate provocation and adequate cause.

rebellion
"deliberate, organized resistance, by force and arms, to the laws or operations of the government, committed by a subject."

receiving stolen property
(1) knowingly taking possession of or control over property that has been unlawfully stolen from another; (2) the receiving of stolen property, knowing that it has been stolen.

reckless behavior
activity which increases the risk of harm.

rehabilitation
the attempt to reform a criminal offender. Also, the state in which a reformed offender is said to be.

renunciation
the voluntary and complete abandonment of the intent and purpose to commit a criminal offense. Renunciation is a defense to a charge of attempted criminal activity.

rescuing a prisoner
a crime which is committed when any person or persons rescues or attempts to rescue any person being held in lawful custody.

restitution
a court requirement that an alleged or convicted offender pay money or provide services to the victim of the crime or provide services to the community.

restoration
a sentencing goal which seeks to make victims and the community "whole again."

restorative justice
a sentencing model that builds upon restitution and community participation in an attempt to make the victim "whole again."

retreat rule
a rule operative in many jurisdictions which requires that a person being attacked retreat in order to avoid the necessity of using force against the attacker if retreat can be accomplished with "complete safety."

retribution
the act of taking revenge upon a criminal perpetrator. Also, the most punishment oriented of all sentencing goals, and one which claims that we are justified in punishing because offenders deserve it.

RICO
an acronym for a section of the federal Organized Crime Control Act known as the Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organizations provision. Some states have passed their own RICO-like statutes.

right of allocution
a statutory provision permitting crime victims to speak at the sentencing of convicted offenders. A federal right of allocution was established for victims of federal violent and sex crimes under the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.

riot
a tumultuous disturbance of the peace by three or more persons assembled of their own authority.

robbery
the unlawful taking of property that is in the immediate possession of another by force or threat of force. Also, larceny from a person by violence, intimidation, or by placing the person in fear.

rout
the preparatory stage of a riot.

rule of law
also, the supremacy of law. The maxim that an orderly society must be governed by established principles and known codes which are applied uniformly and fairly to all of its members.

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