let (one) off the hook

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let (one) off the hook

To pardon, release, or allow one to escape from blame, responsibility, obligation, or difficulty. At first, Sam was suspected of stealing money from the safe, but he was let off the hook after security camera footage showed it was someone else. I was meant to spend the weekend cleaning out the garage, but my wife let me off the hook so I could go on the big fishing trip with my buddies.
See also: hook, let, off
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

let someone off the hook

COMMON If you let someone off the hook, you allow them to avoid being punished or blamed for something. We cannot let the government off the hook for what it has done. They resent any hint that he will be let off the hook because of his privileged position. Note: You can also say that you get someone off the hook if you do something to stop them being punished or blamed for something. She had got Tom off the hook. Note: You can also just say that someone is off the hook if they have not been punished or blamed. That way, Charlie would get the money, and she would be off the hook.
See also: hook, let, off, someone
Collins COBUILD Idioms Dictionary, 3rd ed. © HarperCollins Publishers 2012

let somebody off the ˈhook

(informal) allow somebody to escape from a difficult situation or punishment: We’ll let you off the hook this time, but if you make any more mistakes like that, you’ll lose your job.There won’t be time for me to read my report to the committee, so that’s let me off the hook.
This expression refers to a fish escaping after it has been caught.
See also: hook, let, off, somebody
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
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References in periodicals archive ?
Stoke's Sam Vokes sent an early effort just over and Wigan were let off the hook again when Mark Duffy flicked a free header from a left-wing cross wide of the mark.
District police chief Superintendent Hasron Nazri Hashim said the police had flagged down Ng Chee Guan for running the red light at Jalan Universiti at Bandar Baru Kampar and when stopped, Ng admitted he ran the red light but appealed to be let off the hook.
My son would still be alive now if his killer had not been let off the hook when he was first caught with a knife.
And after being let off the hook when Kenny Miller missed an earlier opening the same player punished Neil Lennon's side before the break.
Two of the officials who were let off the hook for gross neglect of duty were Mayor Melandres de Sagun and his slain vice mayor, Alexander Lubigan, of Trece Martires City, Cavite.
By SAM KIPLAGATInspector-General of Police Joseph Boinnet has been let off the hook after the Supreme Court rejected an application to jail him for six months for failing to release two Iranians who were acquitted in January.Five judges led by Chief Justice David Maraga said the reasons given by the Mr Boinett to continue holding Mr Ahmad Abolfathi Mohammed and Mr Sayed Mansour Mousavi at the Anti-Terrorism Police Unit were valid and not wilful disobedience of a court order.
Summary: A passenger busted for smuggling over 100 new iPhones into Beirut was let off the hook after "some money was paid," a high-ranking airport source told The Daily Star Tuesday.
The Blues have conceded seven goals in their last three matches and were let off the hook by some woeful Watford finishing during Saturday's 4-2 win over the The Toffees' failure to secure a quality replacement for Romelu Lukaku has been well documented but Wayne Rooney has taken on FOOTBALL CHELSEA and Everton were involved in the two highestscoring games of the Premier League weekend just gone and should serve up plenty of goals in tonight's League Cup fourthround tie at Stamford Bridge, writes Dan Childs.
FIRMS in the gig economy are being "let off the hook" by a government-ordered review into the employment rights of workers, unions are warning.
Labour's shadow energy minister Lisa Nandy said: "Companies are still being let off the hook."
Yet another example of a predator tor let off the hook when allegations first swirled around.
By Tom Marshall-Bailey Town 3-5-2 ALEX SMITHIES Let off the hook after his error handed Watford a way back into the contest.
"Another style over substance chain on our doorstep." "Wert" (from Chroniclelive) TOP TREND: A St James' Park pitch invader has been let off the hook after the judge told him she could have sentenced him to watch another Newcastle United game.
For people who are looking for a job and can't find a work it's deeply frustrating and then of course the small minority who don't want to work - well they are let off the hook by the fact there isn't a proper work programme."