A volunteer branch of the Colorado Springs Police Department says they have seen crime against senior citizens increase recently. He offered several tips to keep people over 50 safe from theft attempts.
The Thompsons are over 50, and extremely friendly. If you are are a stranger who claims to be from the neighborhood and needs to use the restroom,however, you might be surprised by the responses you get from the couple.
" I don't think I could flat out say no. I would never allow someone to be deprived like that," said trustworthy neighbor Fred Thompson. " I would probably step out there with them and ask them where they you live. I would also question them a bit," said security conscious Patty Thompson.
The Senior Victims Assistance Team, a volunteer branch of Colorado Springs Police, says that senior citizens are often targets for con-artists and crooks.
" Senior citizens are more vulnerable. They are less aware, " said Robert Gadd from the Senior Victims Assistance Team.
Being settled into a community for a long period of time actually works against senior citizens in some cases. " They are more comfortable in their surroundings. They've lived a long time, and seen a lot of things. They tend to trust people," said Gadd.
It is recommended that seniors do some research before letting someone into their home, especially when people say they are family or long lost relatives. " If there is any question at all, call before you commit yourself to trust anyone.
The Senior Victims Assistance Team also mentioned that it is important to keep track of your relatives. In some cases, people have claimed that a person's relatives were in trouble, and try to solicite money from them in the person's family name. In the end, several of these cases ended up being just scams.