Where or when 

"Two women were arrested and charged in a robbery where one of the suspects is accused of carrying pepper spray as well as her 10-month-old child."

For a commonplace word, where gets misused a lot. Those women above were really arrested and charged "in a robbery in which one of the suspects is accused of carrying pepper spray ... "

Sometimes where appears erroneously in place of when. "Nineteen sixty-eight was a year where assassination was in vogue."

TMQ (Too Much Qualification) is still with us. Michael Klossner saw a reference to "alleged Marathon bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev."

"He was an alleged bomber and a bombing suspect," Klossner writes. "He was not an alleged suspect because he really was a suspect."

They thought something might be wrong:

John Wesley Hall was bemused by the headline "Family Raises Suspicions After Police Find Two People Dead Inside Home." Well, duh.

Something of a connoisseur of crime-related headlines, Hall also took issue with this one: "Officers find several drugs, make arrests while attempting to issue warrant."

"Judges issue warrants; cops execute or serve warrants," Hall says.

Jesse was brothers with Frank James:

"Shorter, who has been laser-timed at 10.63 seconds in the 100, is cousins with Arkansas cornerback signee D.J. Dean." Well, he's a cousin of the cornerback signee. Cousins with is a usage unfamiliar to me. Sounds kind of like they're going steady, cousins until one of them breaks it off. You can be friends with someone for just a period of time ("I was friends with Shirley until she set fire to the barn"), but cousins are for life.

"For the first time since it was erected, the government body that oversees Stonehenge is offering a very unique opportunity." Garner's Modern American Usage says: "Strictly speaking, unique means 'being one of a kind,' not 'unusual.' Hence the phrases very unique, quite unique, how unique and the like are slovenly." And nobody wants to be a sloven.



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