The Double Jeopardy Clause is included in the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Fifth Amendment outlines general limitations on police and criminal justice procedures and was included with the 10 original amendments to the Constitution that make up the Bill of Rights. The Double Jeopardy clause reads, "nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb."

Purposes of the Double Jeopardy Clause

The Double Jeopardy Clause was written to protect defendants from incurring the emotional, physical and financial burdens of multiple trials. This clause prevents convicted criminals from being punished or tried multiple times for the same crime, and it also prevents individuals who are acquitted from being further prosecuted. Although the Fifth Amendment originally only applied to federal courts, the U.S. Supreme Court has interpreted the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to mean that the Fifth Amendment applies to state courts as well.