A Crime Writer’s Mini Dictionary: E Through F


Has your protagonist ever been at a loss for the right words? Do her fans believe what she’s saying? Here are a few terms that might help when she’s out and about in Fiction Land.


EC – Emergency Contact

EDP – Emotionally Disturbed Person

Eight Ball – 1/8th ounce of cocaine/meth/crack (3.5 grams).

Eighth Amendment – Prohibits cruel and unusual punishment and excessive bails and fines.

Embezzlement – Fraudulent appropriation of property or funds to one’s own use. It is a larceny.

En Banc – A matter that’s considered by the full court, such as all judges of an appellate court rather than only one or two.

Entrapment – Defense which excuses a defendant from criminal activity because that illegal activity was a result of government persuasion/trickery.

Erroist – Someone who repeatedly makes mistakes. A true dumbass.

ERT – Evidence Eradication Team (Fire and EMS personnel when they arrive on the scene of, well, anything).

Exclusionary Rule – Prohibits the introduction of evidence acquired by improper or illegal police action (improper search and seizure, etc.).

Hamilton One 033

Extradition – The surrender by one state to another of an accused or convicted person. A state governor has the right to demand the return of a person/suspect as long as probable cause of a crime exists.

Eye Socket Stabilization – Nickname for the self defense tactic where the victim uses their fingers to gouge the eyes of an attacker. Very effective.



Fact-finder – Judge or jury charged with determining the facts of a court proceeding.

FADAR – Sitting on the side of the road giving the appearance of running radar, but with absolutely no intention of stopping a car. It’s a great tactic for reducing the speed of travelers. It’s also a great time to read a few pages from a favorite novel.

False Arrest – Unlawful restraint of one’s personal liberty.

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FD – Fire Department

Felony – A high/serious crime typically punishable by imprisonment (not jail), or death.

Felony Blue – When the chemical in a field test kit for cocaine turns blue. A positive result.

Fighting Words – Words that incite violence and breach of the peace, and that cause injury.

Fire Bomb – Any container of flammable material such as gasoline and/or kerosene, or other chemical compound, having a wick composed of any material which is capable of igniting the contained flammable material.

Flight – Leaving or concealment/hiding to avoid arrest.

Forcible Entry – Entering the property of another without that person’s permission. In some areas a mere trespass is considered forcible entry.

Fourth Amendment – Prohibits unreasonable search and seizure.

Fratricide – The killing of one’s brother.

FTD – Fixing To Die (often used when describing a severely injured victim of a vehicle crash). “Rescue is on the way to the ER with the driver, but he’s FTD.”

Fresh Pursuit (Hot Pursuit) – An immediate, ongoing chase of a fleeing criminal suspect who is attempting to avoid capture. During a fresh pursuit, officers may cross jurisdictional boundaries, and they’re permitted to make an arrest of the fleeing subject without a warrant.

FTA – Failure To Appear (miss a court date).

8 thoughts on “A Crime Writer’s Mini Dictionary: E Through F

  • Pat Marinelli

    Thanks for continuing this. Awesome!

  • Marni Graff

    Live these; so helpful. My police officer son uses most of them.

  • Andrea

    Ha! Evidence Eradication Team!! I’ll be laughing about that all day. Probably not funny for the investigators, though. :-)

  • L. L. Thrasher

    I’m really enjoying these and look forward to making it all the way to Z. — Thanks!

  • Jenni Gate

    What a helpful list! I knew a few of these, but definitely not all. Thanks for sharing.

  • Caroline

    Perfect timing for a project I just started. Thank you!

  • Bari Wood

    How do I get A-D? And will this all be published as a monograph?
    Thanks for anything you can tell me,
    Ms. Bari Wood

  • Lee Lofland

    Bari – Click “Older Entries” at the top left of the page, or you can go to the right sidebar, scroll down to Crime Writer’s Dictionary. Click the link and the three posts (A-H, so far)will pop up. There are more on the way.

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