take the law into own hands


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take the law into (one's) own hands

To act outside the scope of the law to achieve one's own sense of justice, typically by killing, punishing, or passing judgment on wrongdoers. Shopkeepers in the area have begun taking the law into their own hands, arming themselves with guns to fend off would-be thieves. I know you're frustrated by how long it's taken the police to respond, but you can't just take the law into your own hands.
See also: hand, law, own, take

take the law into one's own hands

Fig. to attempt to administer the law; to pass judgment on someone who has done something wrong. Citizens don't have the right to take the law into their own hands. The shopkeeper took the law into his own hands when he tried to arrest the thief.
See also: hand, law, own, take

take the law into (one's) own hands

To mete out justice as one sees fit without due recourse to law enforcement agencies or the courts.
See also: hand, law, own, take
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