smoking gun

Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Financial, Wikipedia.
Related to smoking gun: TMZ

smoking gun

Indisputably incriminating evidence. Likened to a gun that is still smoking after having been fired. A smoking gun was revealed in the form of emails documenting the man's involvement in the money laundering scheme. So far the prosecutor has presented only circumstantial evidence, but she's expected to reveal a smoking gun against the defendant soon.
See also: gun, smoking

smoking gun

Something that serves as indisputable evidence or proof, especially of a crime. For example, There is no smoking gun in the Oval Office; the President had no role in tampering with the evidence . This expression alludes to the smoke coming from a recently discharged firearm, a normal occurrence until the invention of smokeless powder. [Mid-1900s]
See also: gun, smoking

a smoking gun

COMMON If you talk about a smoking gun, you mean a piece of evidence which proves that a particular person is definitely responsible for a crime. The search for other kinds of evidence failed to produce a smoking gun. First of all, there's no smoking gun. In the course of our investigation we did not find a single piece of evidence.
See also: gun, smoking

a smoking gun (or pistol)

a piece of incontrovertible evidence.
This phrase draws on the assumption, a staple of detective fiction, that the person found with a recently fired gun must be the guilty party. The use of the phrase in the late 20th century was particularly associated with the Watergate scandal in the early 1970s involving the US President Richard Nixon . When one of the Watergate tapes revealed Nixon's wish to limit the FBI's role in the investigation, Barber B. Conable famously commented: ‘I guess we have found the smoking pistol, haven't we?’
1998 New Scientist This genetic smoking gun is evidence of a migration out of Asia that is hard to refute.
See also: gun, smoking

a/the ˌsmoking ˈgun

something that seems to prove that somebody has done something wrong or illegal: This memo could be the smoking gun that investigators have been looking for.
See also: gun, smoking

smoking gun

n. the indisputable sign of guilt. The chief of staff decided that the admiral should be found with the smoking gun.
See also: gun, smoking
References in periodicals archive ?
While the hard copy court applications were successfully sealed, along with the related orders signed by federal judges, and were not available on PACER, the online entries for these cases (known as "criminal miscellaneous" files) included confidential information, The Smoking Gun reported.
The sale turned The Smoking Gun into Bastone's full-time job and opened the doors for him to hire help.
Harris initially declined, saying she was on her period, according to the Smoking Gun.
The Smoking Gun also contains a copy of a $25million lawsuit brought against Michael Douglas the actor, by a golf caddie claiming that Douglas hit him in the private parts with a golfball, causing one of his testicles to be surgically removed.
If a smoking gun existed in this matter, Skibine held it.
Because the Clintons, still and all, are banished not; the smoking gun is on display, but the Prez (and press) simply refuses to inhale.
But Mahlman is too much the scientist to agree with Oppenheimer of EDF that the IPCC report really is a smoking gun.
com/buster/hacking/john-doerr-hacked-by-guccifer-098742) The Smoking Gun , which first reported about the hacking of Doerr's email account.
The board is pleased to announce the interim results of Smoking Gun Entertainment Group plc
Sad to say, while the new DVD offers the chance to reassess T&L as a cultural artifact and to cull the out-takes and commentaries, it produces no smoking gun.
Smoking gun Living with a smoker at least doubled a cat's risk of developing the feline analog of the cancer non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (162: 125).
In his internal Philip Morris memos, Smoking Gun was nothing if not candid:
Not even the proverbial smoking gun proves that A shot and killed B.
The trial of chemical carcinogens by a jury of doctors, media, industry and environmental groups remains hung until a smoking gun is discovered.