vigilante
Someone who takes the law into his or her own hands by seizing someone and attempting to convict and punish the supposed criminal.
Category: Criminal Law
Category: Small Claims Court & Lawsuits

Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary. . 2009.

vigilante
n.
   someone who takes the law into his/her own hands by trying and/or punishing another person without any legal authority. In the 1800s groups of vigilantes dispensed "frontier justice" by holding trials of accused horsethieves, rustlers and shooters, and then promptly hanging the accused if "convicted." A mother who shoots the alleged molester of her child is a vigilante.

Law dictionary. . 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • vigilante (1) — {{hw}}{{vigilante (1)}{{/hw}}A part. pres.  di vigilare ; anche agg. Che vigila. B s. m.  e f. Addetto alla vigilanza di qlco. vigilante (2) {{hw}}{{vigilante (2)}{{/hw}}Appartenente a corpi privati di sorveglianti o guardie …   Enciclopedia di italiano

  • vigilante — member of a vigilance committee, 1856, Amer.Eng., from Sp. vigilante, lit. watchman, from L. vigilantem (see VIGILANCE (Cf. vigilance)). Vigilant man in same sense is attested from 1824 in a Missouri context. Vigilance committees kept informal… …   Etymology dictionary

  • vigilante — (Del lat. vigĭlans, antis). 1. adj. Que vigila. 2. Que vela o está despierto. 3. com. Persona encargada de velar por algo. 4. Agente de Policía. vigilante jurado. m. Persona contratada para guardar y proteger los bienes privados …   Diccionario de la lengua española

  • vigilante — adj. 2 g. 1. Que vigia ou está com atenção. = ATENTO, CAUTELOSO, DILIGENTE • s. 2 g. 2. Pessoa que vigia.   ‣ Etimologia: latim vigilans, antis …   Dicionário da Língua Portuguesa

  • vigilante — ► NOUN ▪ a member of a self appointed group of people who undertake law enforcement in their community without legal authority. DERIVATIVES vigilantism noun. ORIGIN from Spanish, vigilant …   English terms dictionary

  • vigilante — ☆ vigilante [vij΄ə lan′tē, vij΄əlän′tē ] n. [Sp, watchman, orig., vigilant] 1. a member of a vigilance committee 2. any individual who acts outside of legal authority, often violently, to punish or avenge a crime, right a perceived wrong, etc …   English World dictionary

  • Vigilante — A vigilante is a person who ignores due process of law and enacts their own form of justice in response to a perception of insufficient response by the authorities. Several groups and individuals have been labeled as vigilantes by various… …   Wikipedia

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