Nolo's Plain-English Law Dictionary

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A police-issued order to appear in court to defend against a charge. Failure to appear can result in a warrant for the citee's arrest, but often a person may consent to the penalty in writing and forgo an appearance in court. 2) A court-issued writ that commands a person to appear in court to do something demanded in the writ or to show cause for not doing so. 3) A reference to a legal authority, such as a case or statute.