Skip to main content

Third Degree

THIRD DEGREE

A colloquial term used to describe unlawful methods of coercing an individual to confess to a criminal offense by overcoming his or her free will through the use of psychological or physical violence.

The least serious grade of a specific crime—the grades being classified by the law according to the circumstances under which the crime is committed—for which the least punishment specified by statute will be imposed.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Third Degree." West's Encyclopedia of American Law. . Encyclopedia.com. 14 Nov. 2018 <https://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"Third Degree." West's Encyclopedia of American Law. . Encyclopedia.com. (November 14, 2018). https://www.encyclopedia.com/law/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/third-degree

"Third Degree." West's Encyclopedia of American Law. . Retrieved November 14, 2018 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/law/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/third-degree

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles

Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

http://www.mla.org/style

The Chicago Manual of Style

http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/tools_citationguide.html

American Psychological Association

http://apastyle.apa.org/

Notes:
  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.