felony

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felony

felony (fĕlˈənē), any grave crime, in contrast to a misdemeanor, that is so declared in statute or was so considered in common law. In early English law a felony was a heinous act that canceled the perpetrator's feudal rights and forfeited his lands and goods to the king, thus depriving his prospective heirs of their inheritance. The accused might be tried by an appeal of felony, i.e., personal combat with his accuser, the losing party to be adjudged a felon (see ordeal). The appeal of felony was gradually replaced by rational modes of trial and was altogether abolished in England in 1819. In addition to the forfeiture of his property, the convicted felon usually suffered death, long imprisonment, or banishment. Death was an especially common English penalty in the 18th and the early 19th cent. To the list of common-law felonies—including murder, rape, theft, arson, and suicide—many others were added by statute. With the abolition of forfeitures in England in 1870 the felony acquired essentially its modern character. Felony is used in various senses in the United States. In federal law, any crime punishable by death or more than one year's imprisonment is a felony. This definition is followed in some states; in others the common-law definition is retained, or else statutes specifically label certain crimes as felonies. Other possible consequences of committing a felony are loss of the rights of citizenship, deportation if the felon is an alien, and liability to a more severe sentence for successive offenses. Felonies are usually tried by jury, and in some states the accused must first have been indicted by a grand jury.
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felony

(formerly) a serious crime, such as murder or arson. All distinctions between felony and misdemeanour were abolished in England and Wales in 1967
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
Regions: Twenty-two of the felonious deaths occurred in the South, 8 in the West, 6 in the Midwest, and 6 in the Northeast.
In the second, In the Line of Fire, published in 1997, they provided the findings from their interviews with offenders who had assaulted law enforcement officers and those with officers who had survived felonious attacks.
Regions: Twenty-nine of the felonious deaths occurred in the South, 21 in the Midwest, 10 in the West, and 10 in the Northeast.
Kendzierski of Cleveland, Ohio, was paroled on March 5th of this year after serving 10 years of a 5-to-25-year sentence for felonious assault and aggravated burglary.
'In fact, respondent was instructed and told to post messages in Telegram by JA against (my) will...which negates felonious intent.'
This climb continued in 1999 with 23 more officers dying accidentally (65 to 42) and culminated in 2000 with 33 more officers losing their lives in accidents than in felonious incidents (84 versus 51).
'Drug traders and consumers resort to felonious acts in pursuit of their dubious drug related activities.' Again, words are being abused, for sheer lack of thought.
Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation, In the Line of Fire: A Study of Selected Felonious Assaults on Law Enforcement Officers (Washington, DC, 1997), 35-37.
In the bill he co-authored, Alvarez said there is a need to reimpose the death penalty because 'the national crime rate has grown to such alarming proportions requiring an all-out offensive against all forms of felonious acts.'
In the bill he co-authored with Castro, Alvarez said there is a need to reimpose the death penalty because 'the national crime rate has grown to such alarming proportions requiring an all-out offensive against all forms of felonious acts.'
The felonious deaths occurred in 18 states and Puerto Rico.
Miller III, In the Line of Fire: A Study of Selected Felonious Assaults on Law Enforcement Officers (Washington, DC: Department of Justice, FBI, and the National Institute of Justice, 1997).