The Office of the Attorney General, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) and the Prosecuting Attorneys Council of Georgia (PAC) are joining together to recognize World Elder Abuse Awareness Day. Elder abuse is a tragic and evolving problem in our state and these groups are working closely together to go after those who seek to perpetrate crimes against our at-risk adults.

“We must continue to protect our aging community,” said Attorney General Chris Carr. “If we don’t, we open up the door for our at risk adults to be physically harmed, malnourished, deprived of medical treatment or completely conned out of their identities and benefit information. We appreciate our statewide law enforcement partners, and we will continue working hand-in-hand with them to protect our state’s most vulnerable.”

“As the aging population increases, assisting local law enforcement agencies with investigations into abuse, neglect, and exploitation of Georgia’s at-risk adult citizens remains a priority for the GBI. We are also committed to continuing our efforts to training both law enforcement and citizens on what constitutes abuse, neglect, and exploitation and where to report it,” said Director of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation Vic Reynolds. “We look forward to sustaining the great collaborative effort we have with the Attorney General’s Office, Prosecuting Attorneys Council, and multiple other State Agencies.”

“As we continue to make it a priority to protect our state’s most vulnerable citizens, we will continue to collaborate with our partner agencies and local District Attorneys in an effort to hold those accountable who would seek to do harm to our aging population,” said Director of the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Council Pete Skandalakis.

Physical Abuse:

  • Pushing, striking, slapping, pinching or beating
  • Burning or scalding
  • Hitting with a hand or instrument
  • Rough handling
  • Improper use of restraints or medications
  • Intentional injuries such as bruising, burns, broken bones or pain
  • Injuries not consistent with medical diagnosis or explanation
  • Forcing someone to remain in a bed or chair
  • Forcing someone to remain in a room (including locking them in)

Emotional Abuse:

  • Threatening someone with violence, nursing home placement, abandonment or neglect
  • Verbal abuse including: threats, insults, harassment, name calling or intimidating
  • Isolating from friends, family or activities
  • Ignoring or excessively criticizing
  • Making derogatory or slanderous statements
  • Repeatedly raising the issue of death
  • Excluding the older person from decision making when he or she is capable and wants to be included

Financial Abuse:

  • Misuse of financial resources for another’s gain
  • Missing money or valuables
  • Credit card charges the individual did not make
  • Unusual activity in bank accounts, depleted bank accounts
  • Legal documents (such as will or power of attorney) signed by a person who does not understand what she/he is signing
  • Checks/documents signed when person cannot write; signatures on checks that don’t resemble the person’s signature
  • Eviction notice arrives when person thought s/he owned the house
  • Unpaid bills (rent, utilities, taxes) when someone is supposed to be paying them for the person

Financial scams targeting seniors have become so prevalent that they’re now considered “the crime of the 21st century.” We believe that educating our aging adults is critical in fighting this type of abuse, and we have partnered with many to offer the Georgia Consumer Protection Guide for Older Adults. You can download a free copy at the link provided, or call 404-651-8600 to request hard copies free-of-charge.

Reporting Elder Abuse:

  • To report abuse, neglect, and exploitation of an older adult or disabled adult who lives in a private residence, contact your local police by dialing 911 or contact Adult Protective Services at 1-866-55AGING - Press “3.” Additionally, you can visit then click the Report Elder Abuse tab.
  • To report abuse, neglect, and exploitation of an older adult, disabled adult or resident in a facility, contact Healthcare Facility Regulation: 1-800-878-6442.
  • To access information on long-term supports and services, services in the home and community, or support for individuals and family members who are aging or living with a disability, contact Georgia’s Aging and Disability Resource Connection (ADRC) to locate an office in your area:
  • To learn more about legal measures, visit the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Council of Georgia’s website:
  • Look at pages 38 – 39 of the Georgia Consumer Protection Guide for Older Adults for a full breakdown of resources in Georgia.

Read more about this all-in effort that lead to the dismantling of a systematic elder abuse scheme in Georgia: CLICK HERE. The Office of the Attorney General is now leading the prosecution of these four individuals, and PAC, GBI and others participated in the investigation that led to their arrests.