image of DA Scarpino and two other individualsOct. 19, 2018 -- Westchester County has many programs and services for its seniors. The District Attorney’s Office attends events around the county and gives presentations focusing on the safety and security of our elderly population. Through our work in investigating and prosecuting crimes against senior citizens the DA’s Office supports this valued population and helps our seniors lead comfortable, safe and happy lives. 

The DA’s Elder Abuse Unit (EAU), part of the Special Prosecutions Division, is focused heavily on training related to elder abuse issues. This year the EAU participated in 20 or so separate trainings for police officers, advocates and seniors on topics related to elder abuse in all its forms. For example, EAU staff gave presentations at the Westchester County Police Academy in addition to community groups in Yonkers, New Rochelle, White Plains and Mount Vernon.

DA Scarpino, as well as Elder Abuse Unit staff, took part in two major events for seniors in October: Senior Law Day, organized by Westchester Public/Private Partnership for Aging Services at the Westchester County Center, and the Ossining Senior Fair, hosted by State Senator David Carlucci and State Assembly Member Sandy Galef. 

Senior Law Day is an annual daylong program offering a choice of workshops plus free 15-minute, one-on-one consultations with some of the county’s leading legal, financial and geriatric care experts. Some workshops were available in Spanish. Senior Law Day programs were free and addressed all aspects of elder law, financial planning and geriatric care management. This year’s event was held Oct. 16.

One of the DA’s Office domestic violence aides, Lisbeth Marte, staffed a table and spoke with hundreds of seniors about our office and about our elder justice work. Second Deputy District Attorney Fredric I. Green, Chief of the Special Prosecutions Division, gave a presentation to a group of seniors and advocates about how seniors can make themselves safe and avoid falling victim to scams and other financial exploitation.

At The Ossining Senior Fair, Oct. 11, at least 20 vendors and public services, including the District Attorney’s Office, offered seniors information on a wide range of recreational, health, legal, housing, and financial services. This year, Phelps Memorial Hospital offered free flu shots to seniors. The fair included a special guest speaker series including experts on health care services, identity theft and scams, and fall prevention.

DA Scarpino gave opening remarks at both events and added, “I am delighted to meet and support our older residents who continue to make our county their home and make it the vibrant place that it is. Our Special Prosecutions Division works closely with senior advocates to protect our most vulnerable and wants our elderly to know our office is there for them when they have concerns for their safety or fall victims to abuse.”

More About The Elder Abuse (EAU) Unit
The Elder Abuse Unit, overseen by ADA Paul Stein-Chief of the Child and Elder Abuse Bureau of the Special prosecutions Divison, is staffed by a dedicated full-time prosecutor, ADA Jamie Fair, and a criminal investigator who are committed to working on elder abuse issues. The EAU handles prosecutions of different types of crimes committed against seniors, including physical abuse and economic crime, and responds quickly to aggressively prosecute those who would prey on seniors. The Unit takes in approximately 200 cases a year.

The assigned prosecutor and the investigator positions are funded partially through a grant from U.S. Department of Justice and the Violence against Women Act, administered by DCJS, called the SAVES (Sexual Assault and Elderly Services) grant.

The criminal investigator works on cases that are initiated by the EAU, assists local police departments and works with them following arrests, visits elderly victims at their homes avoiding burdensome travel, and is available to assist the prosecutor in the work of the EAU.

The public can call the DA’s Elder Abuse Hotline to report any information regarding vulnerable seniors or potential criminal behavior directed at seniors. The hotline number: 914-995-1940

The EAU participates as an active member of the Westchester Elder Abuse Multi-Disciplinary Team, which meets monthly. Its mandate is to examine cases of elder abuse throughout the county and to solve related problems. Special Prosecutions Division Chief Green also is a member of the New York State Judicial Committee on Elder Justice.