COMMITMENT, criminal law, practice. The warrant. or order by which a court or magistrate directs a ministerial officer to take a person to prison. The commitment is either for further hearing, (q. v.) or it is final.
2. The formal requisites of the commitment are, 1st. that it be in writing, under hand, and seal, and show the authority of the magistrate, and the time and place of making it. 3 Har. & McHen. 113; Charl. 280; 3 Crancb, R. 448; see Harp. R. 313. In this case it is said a seal is not indispensable.
4. - 3d. It should be directed to the keeper of the prison, and not generally to carry the party to prison. 2 Str. 934; 1 Ld. Raym. 424.
9. - 8th. In a final commitment, the command to the keeper of the prison should be to keep the prisoner "until he shall be discharged by due course of law," when the offence is not bailable; when it is bailable the gaoler should be, directed to keep the prisoner in his " said custody for want of sureties, or until he shall be discharged by due course of law." When the commitment is not final, it is usual to commit the prisoner " for further hearing." The commitment is also called a mittimus. (q. v.)
10. The act of sending a person to prison charged with the commission of a crime by virtue of such a warrant is also called a commitment. Vide, generally, 4 Vin. Ab. 576; Bac. Ab. h. t.; 4 Cranch, R. 129; 4 Dall. R. 412; 1 Ashm. R. 248; 1 Cowen, R. 144; 3 Conn. R. 502; Wright, R. 691; 2 Virg. Cas. 276; Hardin, R. 249; 4 Mass. R. 497; 14 John. R. 371 2 Virg. Cas. 594; 1 Tyler, R. 444; U. S. Dig. h. t.