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Red Herring

Definition - What does Red Herring mean?

A red herring is something that takes the focus away from the primary issue of a case, and is a distraction. Red herrings are misleading in nature, and are commonly used in law exams for law students.

The term "red herring" can also refer to a person intentionally changing the subject to dodge the issue at hand during questioning, or testimony.

Justipedia explains Red Herring

Essentially, red herrings are misleading distractions that can be used to divert attention away from the important points of the case. For example, if there were three men in a gas station when it was robbed, but only two of the men robbed the store, the third man could potentially be a red herring. The third man is simply a distraction from the other two men. However, he was there, so he could potentially take the focus away from the primary issue, which would be the robbery committed by the two other men.

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