August 7th, 2007

Manhattan -- Washington Heights Question

Greetings! I was thrilled to read all the great information regarding Manhattan, in a recent post. It helped me realize, I've been looking for information on a district (for lack of a better term) in Manhattan, known as Washington Heights.

Even though I've only seen it referenced through a TV show, I was able to see it once via Google Earth. I was wondering what kind of neighborhood it is... Sketchy? Middle-class? Safe? Are there quite a few places to grab a quick bite, in a coffee shop or deli? Google only showed a little bit of what was there.

Would most of the apartment buildings in that area have a doorman? How about churches (or especially synagogues) in the area? Parks? Is it a safe place to walk after dark? Any idea what the median monthly rent would cost in that area? (The character lives on an NYPD detective's salary.)

It's been rather hard to find any info on Washington Heights, so I've had to make up a lot of things in my fic. I would like to write things in a much more realistic manner, however, which is why I appreciate anything you'd care to share about this place.
willfully or otherwise

legal emancipation and age of consent in United States

I've done a fair job of figuring out the variations on age-of-consent laws in the United States, but then one of my characters threw a curveball at me, and I've been unable to come up with an answer.

What effect does legal emancipation of a minor, in this case one who is under the age of consent in the state in which he lives, have on the age of consent?

The best we've been able to find, asking a lawyer who went through all her books, is that emancipation "has an effect" on AoC and treatment in the case of criminal behavior, but none of her books bothered to say what the effect is.

edit: This specific case is in New York City, more specifically Manhattan. I know that the age of consent in Manhattan is one of the confusing, less-than-entirely-straightforward ones; the rule seems to be that a 16-year-old is considered consenting if having sex with a 16- or 17-year-old, and similarly with a 17-year-old (17 or 16). Eighteen and up is a separate class, legal whichever way you swing it so long as both parties are at least eighteen.

The character in question is 16, and his girlfriend is 21, and while I know that in Kansas (for instance) that's perfectly legal as-is, it does not seem to be such in New York. The 16-year-old is a) an orphan (more or less) and b) not from Earth, so regardless of the results, he's going to be an emancipated minor anyway.

Thank you.