July 18th, 2010

Logan/Veronica keys pretty

Prosecutor filing charges against a Sheriff

Setting: modern day California, USA. Fictional town/county.

If a County Prosecutor filed charges against a Sheriff for evidence going missing in his care, what would happen? Would there be a court case? Could he be fined? Go to prison?

They are assuming he destroyed evidence deliberately to protect his daughter, who committed the crime. The evidence was a DVR showing her breaking into someone’s house, which he wiped with a magnet. No one saw him do it.

He also acted suspiciously in that he demanded a court order before he handed the DVR over to the county prosecutor, buying himself time to wipe it.

So the evidence is quite circumstantial, I would say. He certainly had motive and access, but no hard proof.

Would he get away with it under this circumstances? How long would it take for anything to happen, if it’s going to court or whatever happens?

A re-election was already taking place that day before the charges were filed and he loses the election, so any possible proceedings will be with him no longer in the role as Sheriff.

Because the question is quite specific, I’m not really sure how to google it. I’ve tried case against sheriff, and prosecutor filing charges against sheriff.

Graverobbing: how serious will your blisters be?

I have a character who needs to dig up a grave to get a live person out of a coffin. (The guy in the coffin is immortal, don't worry about him.) He's using a shovel. He's also trying to dig the coffin up as quickly as possible, because although his friend in the coffin could survive indefinitely, he's a little panicked by the fact his friend has been buried alive.

Just how badly blistered and abraded could his hands get? The worse he's injured, the better for my nefarious purposes. If the ground were partially frozen or something, would it be reasonable for his hands to be bleeding? He's in reasonable physical condition, in his thirties, and his hands are quite callused from playing guitar, although probably not in the right places to be of much assistance. (And, as this is fanfiction, it is canonical that he has managed to successfully rob a grave in the past, apparently without much difficulty, but I want to make this more difficult.)

Also, how long do you think it would take for him to finish digging? And how big would the hole have to be for him to open the coffin and get his poor buried-alive friend out? I just can't quite figure out the logistics of that.

Searched "digging blisters", "grave digging", "grave digging blisters", "graverobbing"...

EDIT: Whoa! You've all been incredibly informative. Thanks, everyone! I've kind of had writer's block with this story for a while, but I think your help might be the motivation I needed to get writing.

So, ix-nay on the frozen ground, then? I only really thought that made sense because fiction has misled me into thinking that just anyone can go around robbing graves and it's a walk in the park. So, not so much with that then.

best corporate type for tax purposes

Where: current Earth, specifically the United States

Searched: I've read the Wikipedia article on S-corporations, LLPs, LLCs, and looked at the tax code.  Still confused.  :-)

Any business/tax experts out there?

My MC wants to start a company, and choose the correct form to optimize _both_

a) paying as few as taxes as reasonably possible


b) not getting so caught up in avoiding taxes they lose their focus on actually making money

The company in question will have shareholders - less than twenty - from around the world; most will be individuals , but there might be a corporation or two.  (Which I believe rules out being an S-corporation.)  Its job is to start/buy other corporation which actually make the money.  Oh, and it's privately held.

Any suggestions?

Dumb American Questions about UK things

Quid -- is this still the common casual term for the pound? And, I gather the pound is worth about 1.50 in US dollars but does it have about the same purchasing power as a dollar in the US?

Example: you can buy a 1 sausage biscuit, or one hasbrown, or one cup of coffee for a US dollar in the US. About US 1.50 will buy a grand sized plain coffee at Starbucks. Will a single pound by about the same thing?

Also ... 20 something average man from a working class background -- sees a very handsome man and is comparing him to a somewhat classic movie star. In the US, I'd pick Robert Redford. In Britain, who might it be? (era: 2000 - 2002, so basically, this day and age).

Finally, 20 something young man from a working class background. He dropped out of university without completing his course. He gets an opportunity to go back later -- can someone go back to University later? I gather you need to take the A levels, which -- to me -- look like what I'd define as the last two years of required high school here in the US. Are the A levels optional? In the US, you can go from high school, directly to most colleges and universities (depending on a whole host of things from money to grads to SAT scores and etc) but you don't need extra schooling besides the required public school years.

Can you enter a uni without taking A levels? Or years after school? Is it very unusual for someone to return to uni years after dropping out?

In the US, we have state universities, community colleges, two year universities etc -- a whole host of advanced education opportunities that can lead to degrees and all of them are potentially open to students of any age.

I've done my due diligence with Google on the prices and schooling but have no idea where to look for the info on cultural icons.

ETA: Wow, this turned out to be a very meaty post! Thanks everyone for all the good feedback, especially on upper level education and money. General consensus seems to be that quid is acceptable in most cases as a slang for pound, that an older student can go back to uni via access classes, but that a criminal record will make it more difficult and that it's also more possible in the UK (again, generally) to get work w/o a college degree than it is here.

There are a lot of cool links and discussions about money, education and so on in the comments if other folks stumble on this post and are interested in the topic.

Thanks again, everyone!