Definition of three strikes law noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary


three strikes law

; NAmE
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one of a number of laws passed by states in the US that are known officially as mandatory sentencing laws. The laws make it possible to give a life sentence to someone who is found guilty of a crime on three occasions even though the crime itself would otherwise receive a much shorter sentence. The laws were first introduced in the 1990s and there have been many protests against them. The term 'three strikes' comes from baseball, where a batsman has three attempts to hit the ball before being 'out'.