Thursday, May 15, 2008

New York Governor Paterson Gets Serious On Elder Abuse

by Brooklyn Eagle (,

Assemblymember Alec Brook-Krasny (D-Coney Island, Dyker Heights) announced that Governor Paterson has signed into law a measure that makes assaulting a senior citizen a class D violent felony, helping curb predatory attacks by those who target the elderly (A.9818).

“Society cannot tolerate criminals who assault and abuse the elderly,” Brook-Krasny said. “Elder abuse is a heinous crime, and we must take immediate action to stop this type of violence.”

The new law will increase the penalty for assaulting a senior citizen from a class A misdemeanor to second-degree assault – a class D violent felony – if a person 65 years or older is assaulted by someone more than 10 years younger. “Our senior citizens deserve to feel safe and protected,” Brook-Krasny said. “This law will ensure that criminals who assault and victimize the elderly will be severely punished for their shameful behavior.”

The Assembly also passed legislation this year that will increase the penalty from a class A misdemeanor to a class E felony if more than one vulnerable elderly person is victimized by a scam artist (A.9813). An experienced elder law attorney was added to the state’s Crime Victims Board, providing valuable perspective for cases involving older New Yorkers (A.6204). New York State Police are also now required to develop educational materials and procedures relating to elder abuse to help with their cases (A.9905).

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