Nashville District Attorney Glenn Funk is joining the 30 other District Attorneys across the great state of Tennessee in fighting the growing problem of elder abuse. General Funk has a team of prosecutors, led by Assistant District Attorney Brittani Flatt, working daily on stopping the physical, emotional, and financial abuse of our most vulnerable citizens.
Elder abuse, unfortunately, is a growing problem in our state. Thousands of cases reported and now a new law looks to keep criminals behind bars much longer. NewsChannel5’s Kelsey Gibbs spoke with the district attorney’s office about a special team created just to investigate these claims.
Busted for abusing an elderly woman over politics. This is difficult to comprehend. Understand that the daughter in this case was her elderly father’s only caretaker.
NewsChannel 5’s Kelsey Gibbs: The number of cases of elder abuse the Attorney General’s office receives is alarming.
Assistant District Attorney Brittani Flatt: Within 2019, Davidson County saw over 1300 referrals.
Kelsey Gibbs: Statewide, those numbers are even higher. In 2019, there were more than 10,000 cases investigated.
Brittani Flatt: Those numbers are shocking, and I believe it would be shocking for the community to know how many referrals, how many reports about this that we actually see.
Kelsey Gibbs: Assistant District Attorney Brittany Flat is part of the Davidson County Nashville District Attorney’s Vulnerable Protective Investigative Team. The team is responsible for reviewing thousands of cases of elder abuse, neglect, or exploitation.
Brittani Flatt: I do believe it is a problem, and i do believe that now everybody is taking considerable measures to try and reduce that.
Kelsey Gibbs: Lawmakers are hoping a new law could help. As of January 1st, anyone charged with the most heinous crime against the elderly could face a prison sentence.
The person could see a 30-year sentence and a $25,000 fine compared to 3-15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine before the change.
Assistant District Attorney Brittani Flatt: This does happen. Protect your loved ones. Protect your next door neighbor. Watch out for certain signs, and certainly report this information.
Kelsey Gibbs: Newschannel5.
The law also expands who can take out a protection order for an abused victim. Both laws are already in effect.
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