stake someone/something out

stake out

1. To mark the boundary of an area with or as if with stakes. He staked out the area of the field that we could use for our crops. Please stake out the part of the lawn you'd like sprayed for weeds.
2. To claim or reserve something or some area for oneself. In this usage, a noun can be used between "stake" and "out." Why don't you go in ahead of us and stake out a few seats in the theater? Dad's going to stake a spot out for us on the field to watch the fireworks.
3. To keep someone or something under close surveillance or observation. In this usage, a noun or pronoun can be used between "stake" and "out." We've been staking out this drug dealer for months to try to get some concrete evidence. I think the cops are staking your house out, dude.
See also: out, stake

stake someone/something out

1. tv. to position a person so that someone or something can be observed or followed. Marlowe staked out the apartment building and watched patiently for an hour.
2. tv. to position a person to observe someone or something. We staked out two men to keep watch.
See also: out, someone, something, stake