You're watching the news on TV. There's some news about a prisoner who escaped, but has now been caught again. The news anchor (TV announcer) says:
A fugitive has been apprehended after attempting to escape from a Durham county jail.
A "fugitive" is a person who escapes from a jail, runs away when the police are trying to arrest them, or hides from a government agency that is trying to find them.
Since "fugitives" are people who are hiding and running away, here are some common phrases that the word "fugitive" is used in:
the fugitive was captured
the fugitive has been arrested
the fugitive is suspected of murder
the fugitive has surrendered to the police
the fugitive is on the run from the police
the fugitive was apprehended by the police
the fugitive escaped
To "apprehend" a criminal means to catch them. The word "apprehend" is usually only used when talking about criminals. The word sounds very technical, so it's mostly just used by police, lawyers, and in news reports.
To "attempt" to do something means to try:
We attempted to reach him earlier in the week, but were not able to contact him.
This example means that you tried to call someone, but you weren't able to talk to him.
The word "attempt" is pretty formal. Here are some situations where people use it instead of "try":
- You can use it in writing.
- It's common in legal writing and in court.
- Magicians use this word when they're performing a magic trick on stage:
For my next trick, I will attempt to make this woman disappear!
- TV news shows and newspaper articles use it.
In the U.S., counties are government units that are smaller than a state, but larger than a city. Each state typically has about 50-60 counties, with some states having more and some having less.
So a "county jail" is a jail which is operated by that unit of government.The phrase "county jail" brings to mind the image of a small jail where people stay for a short time after they are arrested.
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