a formal address, esp. one warning or advising with authority
Origin of allocutionClassical Latin allocutio ; from alloqui, to speak to ; from ad-, to + loqui, to speak
- A formal and authoritative speech; an address.
- Law A statement that is made by a defendant before a sentence is pronounced.
Origin of allocutionLatin allocūtiō, allocūtiōn-, from allocūtus, past participle of alloquī, to speak to : ad-, ad- + loquī, to speak; see tolkw- in Indo-European roots.
- A formal speech, especially one which is regarded as authoritative and forceful.
- (chiefly US, law) The question put to a convicted defendant by a judge after the rendering of the verdict in a trial, in which the defendant is asked whether he or she wishes to make a statement to the court before sentencing; the statement made by a defendant in response to such a question; the legal right of a defendant to make such a statement.
- (chiefly US, law) The legal right of a victim, in some jurisdictions, to make a statement to a court prior to sentencing of a defendant convicted of a crime causing injury to that victim; the actual statement made to a court by a victim.
- (Roman Catholicism) A pronouncement by a pope to an assembly of church officials concerning a matter of church policy.
- (communication, media) The mode of information dissemination in which media broadcasts are transmitted to multiple receivers with no or very limited capability of a two-way exchange of information.
From Latin allocūtiō (“address”)
allocution - Legal Definition
- The procedure during sentencing when a judge gives a convicted defendant the opportunity to make a personal statement on his own behalf to mitigate the punishment that is about to be imposed. The defendant does not have to be sworn before he makes his address, his comments are not subject to cross-examination, and the opportunity may include the right to offer evidence (such as an explanation for his conduct or a reason why severe sentence should not be imposed) beyond a request for mercy or an apology for his conduct.
- A similar procedure where the victim of a crime is given in some states the opportunity to personally speak, before punishment is imposed, about the pain and suffering suffered or about the convicted defendant.
- The procedure by which a guilty plea can be accepted in a criminal action. The process usually consists of a series of questions designed to assure the judge that the defendant understands the charges, is guilty of the crime he is accused of, understands the consequences of a guilty plea and that he is entitled to a trial, and is voluntarily entering the plea.