Three Tri-State men, all over the age of 65, have been beaten up by teenagers in the last month. Police don't see any kind of new trend emerging where young people are increasingly targeting senior citizens. But police say there is no doubt older folks can be considered easy prey for criminals.
"He pulled him out of the doorway and then hit him in his head," Young Joshua Scott watched as his 66 year old father got beaten up by some neighborhood kids Monday night right outside their home. His father Ruben says he was trying to break up a fight, when he got caught in the middle. "Young people shouldn't be hitting their elders. The way I'm raised you should never hit an elder person," Joshua said.
Joshua's idea of respect doesn't seem to be shared by Michael Fields, a young man police say pushed his way into 67 year old William Taylor's home last month. Taylor says Fields hit him in the face and knocked him to the floor. "I jumped up, tried to chase him down the hall to the exit door. There's no way I could catch him. 20 years ago he wouldn't have gotten out the door and he wouldn't have gotten in the door." Taylor believes he was targeted because he's a little bit older and a little bit slower these days.
In Deerfield Township, police believe Brandon Ashdown and Bobby Whitmore plotted with 13 and 14 year old girls to target an older man as well. Police say they forced their way into a 67 year old man's home to steal jewelry and money.
Young people targeting seniors is not necessarily a growing trend according to police but it is something that makes sense in the mind of a criminal. "Anytime you look at a predator/victim situation. That predator is always looking for a weakness," said Cincinnati Police Lt. Kurt Byrd.