25 November 2013
Seniors swindled out of $2.9 billion each year
Earlier this year, hired caregiver Melissa Renee Murray bilked an elderly Fort Collins woman out of more than $45,000.
A caller pretending to be a granddaughter in need of bail money for a Peruvian jail earlier this month tricked a pair of Fort Collins grandparents out of $16,000.
Garry Kohler, a former Windsor business owner, was sentenced to two years in prison Monday after pleading guilty to stealing thousands of dollars from his elderly business partner.
To the common eye, these cases are just another instance of theft. To those more trained, they’re yet another example of the most common form of elder abuse. A Colorado law will take effect July 2014 and offer new hope for the sobering plight.
More than 60 percent of elder abuse cases — or abuse against older adults — involve financial exploitation. Like many of the cases above, most are perpetrated by someone in a position of trust, typically a family member or caregiver with a “sob story” or access to important financial documents or credit cards, said Helen Davis, coordinator for the Colorado Coalition for Elder Rights and Prevention and a local expert on elder abuse issues.