- Most elder abuse is perpetrated by a family member, caregiver or anyone providing care—including professionals.
- If an elder abuse victim lives in a long-term care facility, he or she is most likely to experience physical and emotional abuse by a nurse’s assistant.
- Abusers are typically people who hold a position of trust, with the opportunity to know the victim’s physical or mental vulnerabilities.
Abusers may be:
Other family member
Many perpetrators of elder abuse:
- Have no means of support aside from the alleged victims’ housing, pension and social security checks
- Have mental illness or disabilities themselves
- May appear controlling; do not want victim interviewed alone
A 2008 study funded by the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) which included abused women in Rhode Island whose perpetrators had been prosecuted, revealed that:
- Almost 50% of the perpetrators had a prior criminal record
Another 2008 study conducted funded by the NIJ found that:
- Approximately 50% of perpetrators had been using drugs or alcohol when the abuse occurred
- Nearly 1/3 of the perpetrators had a history of mental illness
- Over 1/3 of the perpetrators were unemployed
- Almost 1/2 of the perpetrators were socially isolated