More and more law enforcement agencies are focusing on pursuing Castle Rock criminal charges for crimes perpetuated against elderly residents.
Our Castle Rock criminal defense lawyers know that according to Colorado Criminal code 18-6.5:01 and 18-6.503, crimes against the elderly (known formally under the law as an “at-risk adult”), the penalties are increased.
For example, if you commit a theft under $500, that’s generally going to be considered a Class 2 misdemeanor. That means it’s punishable by between three to six months in jail, and a fine somewhere in the neighborhood of $250 to $1,000.
Now, let’s say you commit that same theft against a person who is elderly, or an “at-risk adult.” The crime then becomes a Class 5 felony, which means it is then punishable by between 1 to 3 years in prison, followed by two years of parole and a maximum fine of $100,000.
And our criminal defense attorneys expect we’ll be seeing a significant spike in these kind of cases, given that the older population is rapidly expanding in our area and that a number of police agencies are dedicating special units to addressing these crimes.
According to Douglas County Sheriff’s spokesman Bill Sparman, Douglas county has, over the last decade, become the second fastest-growing place in the country for residents who are over the age of 65, percentage wise.
Why is this?
Partly because people who move here stay here, and also because many residents are moving here to retire. Also, due to the economy, many older residents are moving in with their children to save money.
Throughout the country, there are nearly 80 million baby boomers, and all are approaching older age. What’s more, these individuals typically had fewer children, on average, than Americans did a generation before them. That means that there is a smaller support system available, which means a greater opportunity to perpetuate certain crimes, as less people are watching.
However, the hope from a law enforcement standpoint is that the harsher penalties will reduce the temptation.
That means if you’re accused of a crime against an older or at-risk adult, you’re going to need a Castle Rock criminal defense lawyer who is ready to fight aggressively to have the charges reduced or dropped.