Cook County Probate Judge Chase Daughtrey is urging citizens in the region to be aware of the rising increase of abuse and exploitation in the senior citizen community.
As the area’s population has aged, the chance of at-risk adults being abused or exploited has become more prevalent. In recent weeks, the Probate Court in Cook County has opened cases on three adults who have been subject to abuse and exploitation.
“Unfortunately, there are bad actors who are determined to target one of our most vulnerable populations. These bad actors are strangers and even relatives of these victims. It is imperative as a community that we are aware of this evil and ensure our friends and family members are protected,” stated Judge Daughtrey.
Georgia Attorney General Chris Carr has made this issue a top priority in his administration. In 2018, Attorney General Carr released a Consumer Protection Guide for Older Adults. In an elder abuse roundtable held in Cook County in 2018, Carr stressed the importance of awareness on this topic, stating at the time, “This is an issue that intertwines in a lot of different areas. One of the things that I’ve found on this issue, as on many issues, is it’s really about getting more eyeballs on the topic and making sure we talk about it.”
Daughtrey encourages civic groups and churches to share the Consumer Protection Guide with their members and asks that family members talk about the dangers of exploitation with their loved ones.
“Predators are using social media to take advantage of not only children, but at-risk adults as well. In the past six months, I have seen one person’s entire life savings stolen from them leaving them with limited funds to pay bills. We must make this a top priority as a community,” Daughtrey said.
Anyone who suspects elder abuse or exploitation should contact local law enforcement as well as Adult Protective Services at 1-866-552-4464 or aging.ga.gov. Attorney General Carr’s Guide can be found at consumer.georgia.gov.