in the very act of a crime, wrongdoing, etc., or in possession of self-incriminating evidence: They caught him red-handed dipping into the till.
- red-hand·ed·ness, noun
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use red-handed in a sentence
This was beside the point, Breitbart argued, because ACORN was “caught red-handed.”Andrew Breitbart Dies: Most Controversial Moments (Video) | The Daily Beast | March 1, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
Sen. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) was caught red-handed by the C-SPAN camera making his thoughts on the bombed joke all too clear.Obama’s Spilled Milk Joke: Late Night Comedians Riff (Video) | Marly Faherty | January 26, 2012 | THE DAILY BEAST
Having been caught red-handed with a smoking bong firmly pasted to his maw, the long knives are out for the Olympic hero.
We've caught six men red-handed right on the rookery, with dead seals, most of them females.The Boy With the U. S. Fisheries | Francis Rolt-Wheeler
He was captured red-handed in the act at yonder window, listening to that which he may never know and live to prate about.The Master of Appleby | Francis Lynde
The son miraculously escaped these red-handed reprisals; and Hamilcar's faithful slave smuggled him aboard ship for Athens.Snnica | Vicente Blasco Ibez
Here was Elaine, caught red-handed in the commission of all three of these stupendous crimes.A Forgotten Hero | Emily Sarah Holt
Maunders himself was too much of a coward to steal, too politic not to realize the disadvantage in being caught red-handed.Roosevelt in the Bad Lands | H. Hagedorn.
British Dictionary definitions for red-handed
(postpositive) in the act of committing a crime or doing something wrong or shameful (esp in the phrase catch red-handed)
- red-handedly, adverb
- red-handedness, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012