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Vulnerable older adults face high risks of financial, physical, and psychological abuse. Too often, these abuses may go undetected or may be disregarded after they are discovered. Frequently family members or caregivers are the ones perpetuating the abuse.
The Los Angeles Police Department’s elder abuse unit recently checked in on Richard Simmons. He had not been seen in public for more than a year. A close friend was worried and called the police suggesting that Simmons, 66, was in danger. The police visited his house and concluded that he was fine, reported TMZ (1.24.15).
As reported by TMZ, Simmons let two police officers into his Hollywood Hills home. He was “articulate, lucid, relaxed and appreciative of their concern.”
Simmons reportedly posted the following message on Facebook: “I am so touched by the outpouring of love and concern I have received today. I have had a tough time dealing with this injury, as it is keeping me from doing what I truly love to do and that is to teach classes around the world. Make sure you keep Sweatin’!”
Simmons has had an active social media presence with regular updates to his Twitter account. However, it was unclear whether Simmons was posting those messages himself or a staff member was responsible.
Simmons manager said that the fitness guru was simply depressed over a knee injury, said TMZ. Simmons told the police that he was tired of being in the public eye. He also apparently said that he’s in regular touch with the people in his life who matter to him.
The cops found no abuse after an hour of talking with Simmons, said TMZ.
In the comments section below the recent stories on Richard Simmons, it is apparent that there are still some people who believe Simmons was putting on an act for the police.
Abusers are not always easy to spot. In many cases, victims of elder abuse may not be mentally or physically able to report their abuse, or they may be isolated and-or too afraid or too ashamed to tell someone. The majority of abusers are family members. Other offenders may include old friends, newly developed “friends” who deliberately prey on older adults, and caregivers in positions of trust, according to DoSomething.org.
Abuse can also occur at a long-term care facility, such as a nursing home or assisted living residence. Employees and temporary staff who have direct contact with the victims are the most frequent perpetrators.
Elder abuse is a crime that carries criminal and civil penalties. People who suspect a loved one or friend is the victim of elder abuse or nursing home abuse should report the abuse to the proper authorities as soon as possible. An experienced elder abuse lawyer can help victims of financial abuse as well as cases involving physical abuse or neglect.
The TMZ story cited was “Richard Simmons Cops Visit After Elder Abuse Claim And He’s Fine.”