NCEA Newsfeed 2/21/14

Newsfeed – Friday, February 21, 2014

The newsfeed includes articles and stories related to abuse of elders and adults with disabilities.  Articles related to elders appear in the top half of the newsfeed.  Articles related to abuse of adults with disabilities appear towards the bottom.  To subscribe to the NCEA listserv, please send an email with your name, occupation, your organization/agency name, city and state, and a statement about your professional interest or expertise in elder abuse to  Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!  An archived collection of previous newsfeeds is available here


A calendar of upcoming elder abuse and neglect events and funding opportunities can be found at the bottom of the newsfeed.





NATIONAL, Forbes, February 13, 2014

Why do elderly parents fall for scams that seem so obvious to us?

The U.S. Attorney’s office recently charged six defendants with yet another telemarketing fraud scheme targeting the elderly.  The article discusses the various reasons why our elders are such easy prey for these thieves.


ALABAMA (Gardendale), The Orchards, February 13, 2014

Caregiver for elderly stole from those she was paid to help, Gardendale police say 

A Birmingham woman who worked as a caregiver in Gardendale faces 11 criminal charges after authorities say she took advantage of those she was supposed to help. Gardendale police say Vacena Mae Hall, 28, took credit cards from three different victims and used them to buy things for herself.


CALIFORNIA (Napa), Napa Valley Register, February 13, 2014

Police: Daughter arrested on suspicion of elder abuse 

A woman was arrested at about 12:30 p.m. Wednesday in the 1000 block of Lorraine Drive on suspicion of assaulting her 85-year-old father during an argument a few days ago, according to the Napa County Sheriff’s Office.


CALIFORNIA (San Diego), Center for Health Reporting, February 13, 2014

Lawmakers hear assisted-living concerns

Hearings were called in Sacramento after U-T San Diego published “Deadly Neglect,” a series of reports in September and December resulting from a ten-month partnership with the CHCF Center for Health Reporting. The publicity prompted the chairmen of the Senate and Assembly Human Services committees to convene a joint hearing to get answers from state bureaucrats who license and regulate about 7,500 assisted living homes.


CALIFORNIA (Sonoma County), The Press Democrat, February 20, 2014

Rohnert Park casino robbery victim calls attack 'life changing' 

A 68-year-old man, who is diabetic, was planning to take his daily insulin injection when two men came from behind, grabbed his arms and demanded cash. The retired Army sergeant major wrestled with the taller of the two before the other one bashed his head with something solid.


FLORIDA, Florida Today, February 19, 2014

Senior consult: caregivers can become abusers

Dr. Pamela Tronetti speaks on her experiences and knowledge of elder abuse and prevention.  Dr. Tronetti said she has “spent a fair share of my life going out on adult protective services calls to rescue people from abuse and neglect situations.”


FLORIDA, Sun Sentinel, February 13, 2014

Attorney warns retirees of being scam targets

Scamsters don't always call with some get-rich scheme — they also can try to trick older people into buying products, services or even medical work they don't need.  That's what South Florida elder law attorney Alice Reiter Feld warned as she talked about "Scam-Nation: If You're a Boomer or Senior, You're a Target!" Wednesday evening at Lenox On the Lake, an assisted living community in Lauderhill.


IDAHO (Twin Falls), Magicvalley, February 19, 2014 

5 P.M. UPDATE: Caregiver Accused of Beating Man with Metal Pipe; Certificate Suspended

A woman who was running an assisted living home in Twin Falls County hit a man with severe dementia in the head with a metal pipe, police say. Jordana Brenda Bryan, 62, was arraigned Wednesday in county Magistrate Court on a felony charge of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon.


IOWA (Cedar Rapids), The Gazette, February 20, 2014

Cedar Rapids man accused of exploiting elderly woman for $95,000 

A 41-year-old Cedar Rapids man is accused of financially exploiting an elderly woman and taking more than $95,000 from her bank account over a two-year period. The 41-year-old, who had his initial court appearance Monday, was charged with ongoing criminal conduct, first-degree theft and dependent adult abuse, according to a criminal complaint. 


IOWA, The Gazette, February 12, 2014

Bill targeting elder abuse in Iowa advances

State lawmakers are being asked to revamp and toughen laws designed to combat abuse, neglect and financial exploitation of Iowans aged 60 years or older.  A bill that was the product of a two-year study on elder abuse prevention and intervention cleared a Senate Human Resources subcommittee on Wednesday.


KANSAS (Topeka), The Wichita Eagle, February 20, 2014

Kansas senate passes financial protections for senior citizens 

The Senate unanimously passed a pair of bills Thursday designed to help protect senior citizens against financial scams. Offenders convicted of financially abusing a person over 60 could be prosecuted under the Kansas Consumer Protection Act.


KENTUCKY, Courier-journal, February 20, 2014

Senate OKs adult abuse registry bill 

Just hours after Gov. Steve Beshear joined top legislative leaders to support a long-sought adult-abuse registry in Kentucky, the state Senate unanimously approved a bill Thursday that would provide what advocates say is a badly needed safeguard for some of its most vulnerable citizens.


MAINE (Penobscot County), Bangor Daily News, February 16, 2014

New state program helps fight elder financial abuse

The Bangor Daily News reported last week on a new effort to head off elder financial abuse. The initiative, called Senior$afe, aims to train employees of banks and credit unions to spot signs of financial abuse at the teller’s window, drive-through or other places where relatives or others might make transactions that are not in the best interest of the account holder.


MICHIGAN, Grand Rapids Business Journal, February 20, 2014

West Michigan’s elderly are falling victim to financial abuse 

Each year, according to the Alliance for Health, about 80,000 Michigan elders fall victim to some form of criminal abuse — and one of the most common types is financial, in the form of fraud and embezzlement. The Grand Rapids Police Department now has an officer dedicated to enforcement of Michigan’s Vulnerable Adult law.


MINNESOTA (Hermantown),  Star Tribune, February 19, 2014

Woman, 89, raped by caregiver at Hermantown, Minn., senior facility 

An 89-year-old woman was raped in her bed at a senior living home in Hermantown, Minn., and then placed in a mental health unit of a hospital in nearby Duluth for nearly three days without treatment for her injuries. Andrew Scott Merzwski, 30, a nursing assistant, admitted to raping the woman at Edgewood Vista senior living facility, after he gave the victim narcotics that he knew would make her “mentally incapacitated,” according to court documents.


MISSISSIPPI, Clarion Ledger, February 19, 2014 (Opinion)

Seniors vulnerable to abuse, fraud by caregivers 

Cases of vulnerable adults being abused by caretakers are rising across the nation. The author states that today, a Saltillo woman and her daughter were arrested and charged with exploitation of a woman with dementia who in her care, according to a release from the office of Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood.


MISSOURI (Lincoln County), St. Louis Post-Dispatch, February 20, 2014

Lincoln County man, 83, ripped off another 83-year-old, police say 

A man who controlled the finances of an 83-year-old is accused of taking more than $75,000, including the payout from a life insurance policy on the victim's dead wife. He had power of attorney for the victim between August 2011 and February 2013, police said, but improperly used his authority to raid the man's bank accounts, a CD and credit card.


NEW YORK, The Blog, February 20, 2014

The Utility and Ethics of 'Granny Cams' (Opinion) 

Mark Lachs, M.D. discusses hidden cameras in nursing homes and how he believes they should be used.  Stating that there should be zero tolerance for elder abuse in nursing homes, he also addresses the question of whether the employees have any rights.


SOUTH CAROLINA (Columbia), The Chronicle, February 17, 2014

New legislation aimed at preventing abuse and human trafficking of seniors

Legislation will be introduced this week in the State Senate that proposes the creation of the "Senior Trafficking and Exploitation Reform of 2014" in South Carolina.  This legislation is a proactive approach to preparing South Carolina for a large influx of older adults, who are becoming increasingly vulnerable to new forms of clever schemes and creative tactics by scammers and predators alike, the article states.


INTERNATIONAL (Montreal, Canada), CBC News, February 18, 2014

Bail granted after Montreal-area caregiver admits to mistreating elders

Immacula Eugène, a 51-year-old caregiver who worked at a long-term health care facility on Montreal’s South Shore, was released on bail Tuesday with several conditions.  Her bail was set at $15,000, and Eugène is forbidden from working in any hospital or health-care facility.


INTERNATIONAL (British Columbia, Canada), The Columbian, February 13, 2014

Expert tells how to spot, prevent elder abuse

Tiffany Couch, owner of Vancouver's Acuity Forensics, has built her company on solving fraud cases for law enforcement, businesses and individual clients. On Thursday, she gave advice about how to spot and prevent financial exploitation of vulnerable adults without her help.


INTERNATIONAL (Australia), The Telegraph News, February 16, 2014

1,000 sickening complaints of abuse against the elderly logged in NSW 

According to figures exclusive to The Sunday Telegraph, 30 per cent of calls to the NSW Elder Abuse Helpline in the last 12 months related to financial abuse, while more than 300 people reported psychological assaults on the elderly.




CALIFORNIA (Los Angeles), KTLA 5, February 18, 2014

Residents lived 'daily nightmare' at 2 adult-care homes: L.A. city attorney 

Mentally and physically disabled residents of two adult care facilities in Los Angeles’ West Adams neighborhood were subject to filthy conditions, punished for not attending church, locked out of their homes and made to sleep outside at night, according to a complaint filed by city prosecutors.


CALIFORNIA (Santa Rosa), SF Bay Area, February 18, 2014

Santa Rosa Man Accused Of Embezzling $400K From Disabled Clients

A Santa Rosa man suspected of embezzling nearly $400,000 in Social Security funds from dozens of developmentally disabled clients is scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.


INDIANA (Wayne County), Pal-Item, February 18, 2014

Judge rejects plea deal in disabled adult abuse case 

A Wayne County judge on Tuesday rejected a plea deal involving a Richmond woman charged with battering a disabled female and the victim’s infant child.  That agreement, filed Tuesday, would have had Ward sentenced to 1½ years on each of the two counts of battery, with all but 30 days suspended for each count.


MASSACHUSETTS (Watertown), February 12, 2014

State agency fights uphill battle against abuse of disabled 

While reports of abuse against disabled adults have increased by nearly 20 percent since 2009, the state agency responsible for protecting them has seen its staffing reduced and it would fall further under the governor’s budget recommendation.


OREGON (Gresham), KOIN, February 19, 2014

5th person arrested in Gresham kidnapping

Gresham police arrested a fifth person in the case of a developmentally disabled man held against his will for days.  The victim told police that for much of the time, he had been blindfolded and that the people inside the apartment threatened to kill him using a knife.


INTERNATIONAL (United Kingdom),, February 14, 2014

Care home manager jailed for defrauding residents of thousands of pounds 

A former deputy manager of a Sheffield care home for adults with learning disabilities has been jailed for defrauding more than 20 residents of thousands of pounds.  Denise Nichols, 55, of Kiveton Lane, Kiveton Park, admitted fraud by abuse of position at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court.


INTERNATIONAL (United Kingdom), Hartlepool Mail, February 20, 2014

Pensioner who filmed vulnerable adults in toilet committed ‘gross abuse of trust’ 

A judge has condemned the actions of a disgraced carer who “took advantage” of vulnerable adults with severe learning disabilities for his own amusement.  The 68-year-old filmed the men in the toilet at the council-run center before adding embarrassing computer-generated explosions to the footage in an act the judge deemed to be “a gross abuse of trust”. 




MISSOURI (Hamilton), Ravalli Republic, February 20, 2014

Hamilton police chief releases name of woman who died after eviction 

The 61-year-old Hamilton woman who died after being evicted from her home has been identified as Linda M. Shelley. Shelley’s body was found behind the Super One Foods grocery store in Hamilton on Sunday at about noon by a man walking in the area.


TEXAS (Texas City), Chron, February 13, 2014

Missing Texas City man with dementia found dead in ditch 

An 85-year-old Texas City man was found dead in a ditch with water in it Thursday morning hours after he was reported missing. Police said Tommy Garner sometime between about 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. walked away from his home


WASHINGTON (Franklin County), The Columbus Dispatch, February 15, 2014

Court developing plan to help hoarders 

Judge Daniel Hawkins is working to establish an organized program to fight a recognized disorder that not only affects hoarders and their families but also spills into neighborhoods. He’s talking with leaders of the Alcohol, Drug and Mental Health Board of Franklin County, county Adult Protective Services professionals and others.



 Upcoming Elder Abuse Conferences/Training Events (in chronological order):


·          IOM Forum on Global Violence Prevention will host a public workshop on February 26-27, 2014. This workshop will explore a model for thinking about mental health, violence, and prevention with the goal of arriving at a better understanding of the relationships between mental illness and risks of violence perpetration and victimization as well as the mental health consequences of exposure to violence.  The workshop will be held at the Keck Center in Washington, DC, and is free and open to the public. However, space is limited.  More information found here:


·          The Arc’s National Center on Criminal Justice and Disability is holding its second webinar featuring Dr. Nora Baladerian’s presentation, “Crime Victims with Disabilities: An Overview for Professionals in the Criminal Justice System” on February 27th at 12:30 CST, 1:30 EST.  This comprehensive webinar will present an overview of the issues surrounding victimization of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD), and where various professionals fit into the solution.  Contact with any questions.  To register please use the following link:  

·          The National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care will be hosting a Free Webinar called “Tips and Tools for Preventing and Responding to Financial Exploitation in Long-Term Care Facilities” on Wednesday, March 5, 2014 3:00- 4:30 ET. Topics include: The role of Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in financial protection and education of older adults and share new resources attendees can use with consumers; The responsibilities and oversight of representative payees and how attendees can support the rights of Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) beneficiaries and report suspicion of misuse of benefits by a representative payee; Case scenarios; New consumer factsheets regarding the prevention, detection and reporting of financial exploitation in nursing home and assisted living facilities. Space is limited. To register, click here:

·          Aging in America 2014 Conference by the American Society on Aging (March 11-15, 2014) presents the National Forum on Elder Justice Thursday, March 13th from 1:00pm-5:00pm PST.  The program will examine elder justice from a multidisciplinary perspective, looking at everything from research and practice to policy and the impact of elder abuse on diverse populations.  Pre-registration is required.  Find more information here:   


·          14th Annual International Family Justice Conference “The Root of All Crime” is April 2-4, 2014 in San Diego, CA.  The conference will include training and interactive peer to peer discussions on issues related to the handling of domestic violence, child abuse, sexual assault, elder abuse and stalking cases with special focus on law enforcement response, criminal prosecution, civil legal assistance, and advocacy.  For more information click here:


·          The 7th Annual Forensic Investigations on Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, and Child and Elder AbuseThis conference will be held in the Kansas City Convention Center in Kansas City, Missouri from May 14-16th, 2014.  For more information click here: or contact


·          The 3rd World Congress on Adult Guardianship will be convened on May 28-30th , 2014 in the Washington DC Metropolitan Area. It is sponsored by the National Guardianship Network in affiliation with the International Guardianship Network. The theme of the conference is, “Promising Practices to Ensure Excellence in Guardianship Around the World.” Proposals for presentations are due July 31.  See


·          The 2014 Consumer Voice Annual Conference will be held in Arlington, Virginia from November 15-19, 2014.  There will be speakers in the field, long-term care policy updates from key experts, and tools and resources for advocacy.  Registration and the conference agenda details will be coming soon.  For questions, contact:   



An archived collection of previous newsfeeds is available here:


National Center on Elder Abuse
Center of Excellence on Elder Abuse & Neglect
University of California, Irvine
Division of Geriatric Medicine and Gerontology
101 The City Drive South
Orange, CA 92868

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