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Tulsa Police Help Seniors Avoid Becoming Crime Victims

Matt Trotter

Tulsa joins World Elder Abuse Awareness Day with an event to give seniors resources to avoid becoming victims of crime and abuse.

Detective Debbie Crisp with the Tulsa Police Department focuses on crimes against elders. She said she gets a new case almost every week.

"They are being taken advantage of financially through all the home repair frauds, the scams," Crisp said. "And then some cases, you know, you've got caregiver abuse and neglect."

Financial crimes in the form of telemarketing fraud, home repair and charity scams are common. The first step for those who think they or a loved one is a victim is to contact your local law enforcement agency.

Tulsa County First Assistant District Attorney Doug Drummond said seniors are sometimes hesitant to report crimes.

"I think that they feel they're going to lose their independence if they tell their children or their family members that somebody has taken advantage of them," Drummond said. "Depending on their health, sometimes dementia or something like that makes it difficult for them to testify.

Theft and fraud are Tulsa County’s most frequent crimes against elders, followed by assault. Drummond says many crimes against elders are tied to the perpetrators looking for drug money.