Honolulu Elder Abuse Prosecution Squad Sees Huge Increase in Cases
Scams against the elderly are on the rise. And there are so many different scams, police have a hard time keeping up. Since 2008, elder abuse cases in Honolulu have risen almost 300 percent. Honolulu Police and prosecutors teamed up that year to form an Elder Abuse Justice Squad. The size of the squad has since doubled in 2010, then expanded again last year. The unit does not just handle scams against seniors, but also physical abuse and neglect. "The elders do not complain," says Honolulu prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro. "When they are physically abused, they do not complain. And when they do complain, people don't believe them." Kaneshiro says he wants the world to know that Hawaii is not a place that ignores crimes against the elderly. The unit has 9 attorneys and legal aids and 13 HPD detectives who work cases involving people 60 years and older. "We decided, we're going to make this a rapid response team," says Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Scott Spallina. He is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Anytime a person is arrested for a crime against a senior, he is notified.
Source/more: Hawaii News Now