circumstantial evidence, indirect evidence(noun)
evidence providing only a basis for inference about the fact in dispute
Circumstantial evidence is evidence in which an inference is required to connect it to a conclusion of fact, like a fingerprint at the scene of a crime. By contrast, direct evidence supports the truth of an assertion directly—i.e., without need for any additional evidence or the intervening inference. On its own, it is the nature of circumstantial evidence for more than one explanation to still be possible. Inference from one piece of circumstantial evidence may not guarantee accuracy. Circumstantial evidence usually accumulates into a collection, so that the pieces then become corroborating evidence. Together, they may more strongly support one particular inference over another. An explanation involving circumstantial evidence becomes more valid as proof of a fact when the alternative explanations have been ruled out. Circumstantial evidence allows a trier of fact to deduce a fact exists. In criminal law, the inference is made by the trier of facts in order to support the truth of assertion. Testimony can be direct evidence or it can be circumstantial. If the witness claims they saw the crime take place, this is considered direct evidence. For instance, a witness saying that the defendant stabbed the victim is direct evidence. By contrast, a witness who says that she saw the defendant enter a house, that she heard screaming, and that she saw the defendant leave with a bloody knife gives circumstantial evidence. It is the necessity for inference, and not the obviousness of a conclusion, that determines whether or not evidence is circumstantial.
The numerical value of circumstantial evidence in Chaldean Numerology is: 3
The numerical value of circumstantial evidence in Pythagorean Numerology is: 5
Sample Sentences & Example Usage
Some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find a trout in the milk.
You're always dealing with circumstantial evidence. We don't have the ability to probe people's minds.
Some employees working for Petrobras did engage in corruption or acts of corruption, the circumstantial evidence that is available from the prosecutors are pretty substantial.
At the outset of the investigation, there was circumstantial evidence of collusion. There was direct evidence, I think, of deception, and that's where we begin the investigation.
It's really difficult to know. If you ever were to ask one of the Supreme Court justices whether this has any influence in any way, the answer is going to be no, at the same time, we think we have circumstantial evidence that several justices take into account the political climate, the political consequences of their decisions.
Images & Illustrations of circumstantial evidence
Translations for circumstantial evidence
From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary
- أدلة ظرفيةArabic
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"circumstantial evidence." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 22 Feb. 2018. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/circumstantial evidence>.