Gov. signs bill to combat elder abuse

Daily Planet Wire Service
Wednesday September 18, 2002


Gov. Gray Davis signed a bill Tuesday designed to combat elder abuse. 

State Assemblyman Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, who authored the bill, said the legislation received bipartisan support from the beginning. 

“[The bill] will help protect our seniors and dependent adults from physical abuse by increasing punishments for those who batter our elders.” 

The legislation establishes a new crime, “battery on an elder or dependent adult,” and sets the punishment at a fine of up to $2,000 and/or imprisonment in a county jail for up to one year. 

Those enhancements put elder battery on par with battery of a peace officer or spouse.  

The maximum penalties in Simitian's bill double those in existing law. 

The bill also protects elders when they are third-party victims, rather than the intended or primary victim.