Three strikes and You are Out Law Law and Legal Definition

Three strikes and You are Out is a legislation enacted in several states of the U.S. that makes life terms or extremely long terms without parole, mandatory for criminals who have been convicted of a third felony or of three felonies involving violence, rape, use of a deadly weapon or molestation. The name comes from baseball, where a batter is permitted two strikes before striking out on the third. These laws became popular in 1990’s. The impetus for "three strikes, you're out" has come from public outrage over murders, assaults, rapes and child molestations by released ex-convicts with records of repeated violent crimes. This law was formally known among lawyers and legal academics as habitual offender laws.