Can a retired crime scene investigator keep crime scene photos as personal property?

Email answers from Baton Rouge Police Department spokesman Sgt. Donald Stone, and East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Casey Rayborn Hicks:

Hicks: “I think that will vary from agency to agency. Normally, any item relative to a case is part of the investigation and stays within the agency. Once a case is closed, however, many items become public record.”

Stone: “No. All photos are considered evidence. At no time does evidence become one’s personal property. Yes, photos do become public record after a case is closed, closed meaning after all court proceedings are completed, including appeals.”

Taxes on prizes

What is the tax percent one has to pay federal and state (Louisiana) regarding a house won by raffle? How long do you have to pay the IRS the tax on the home won?

William C. Potter, of Postlethwaite & Netterville, provides this answer: “Under the broad concept of what is income, prizes and awards are considered taxable income. This is ‘ordinary income’ and can be taxed as high as 35 percent federal and 6 percent to Louisiana.? The rate depends on how high your other income is.? For instance, if the winner’s other taxable income from wages, interest income less deductions and personal exemptions would be $75,000 (and assuming this winner was married), the value of the house would be taxed beginning at 25 percent.

“The tax on this winning would be due on April 15 in the year following the awarding of the prize.?This can present a real cash problem.? If the house was worth $200,000, this person could owe $60,000 or more in taxes at that date.?The new homeowner likely might immediately have to go mortgage the property to get the funds to meet the tax obligation.

“I have heard horror stories of people on ‘The Price Is Right’ and other television quiz shows who win property as opposed to money getting into real tax binds.”