Glossary of Public Records Terms

Select a letter to view glossary terms for that letter.

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Termsort descending Definition

The legal and formal certification of the innocence of a person who has been charged with a crime; a finding of not guilty.


This is equivalent to a judicial decision or sentence. This implies a hearing by a court of legal evidence on the factual issues involved in the case.

Adjudication Withheld

Many jurisdictions have a procedure in criminal cases allowing an accused person to essentially admit to the charges and be placed on probation without a formal finding of guilt. If the individual completes the probationary period without being charged with any subsequent criminal offenses, the original charges are dismissed. This procedure is not a conviction of the crime charged.

ARD (Accelerated Rehabilitation Disposition)

This program is offered to a defendant in place of adjudication. If the defendant completes the program, the case is closed. This is not a conviction.


Procedure whereby the accused is brought before the court to plead to the criminal charges against him or her in the indictment of information.

Arrest Warrant

Written permission given by a judge (or magistrate, etc.) to a police officer to arrest a person.


An attempt to commit violent injury upon another person. Physical contact is not necessary. Assault is an act done toward the commission of a battery, and immediately precedes battery.