Medication Theft from the Elderly

To report suspicious activity call...Your local police Department in Lexington this is 859-258-3600..

Taken in part from

Many cases that are investigated were crimes of opportunity. If you remove the opportunity for your medications to be taken you will reduce your chances of being a victim.

Theft can occur in a person's home.

In the home, elders are sometimes more susceptible targets to medicine theft. Family or friends may steal pills often or regularly, and in some cases, the elder is actually USED exclusively to get access to prescription drugs. This is criminal behavior of the lowest level and must be reported and punished severely!

Elders in the home may also be victimized by visitors to their residence, such as trade workers, delivery people and even domestic care workers, such as Home Health Aides. Actually aides are one of the most common sources of drug theft, since they are often totally or partially responsible for the elder taking the pills to begin with. Potential criminals may watch a home and notice additional traffic or hear that a resident has been ill, injured or hospitalized.

Medication Theft can affect everyone.

The effects of drug theft from the elderly can be wide ranging and extremely problematic for the senior and society as a whole:

• The senior may be on a limited budget and may not be able to replace stolen drugs due to financial constraints.

• The elder may need the pills in order to live and if they go missing, may suffer an injury or even wrongful death.

• The elder may be made to feel as if they forget that they already took the pills or lost them.

• Stolen pharmaceuticals fuel criminal activity, degrading society at every level.

• Criminals under the influence of stolen drugs are more likely to commit additional crimes, including violent actions.

What can you do to protect yourself or your loved ones?-List provided by Detective Chris Russell, Lexington Police Department

• Obtain a lock box and wear the key around your wrist or neck.

These lock boxes can be obtained at most retail chairns. Certain home health agencies have in the past provided these boxes in situations where theft is expected.

Only allow the box to be opened in your presence.

• Never give anyone the key to go get the medication

Make them bring the box to you.

• Keep your pill organizer in the lock box as well.

• If a lock box is not available always keep your medications with you when someone else is working in your home or visiting.

• There is no safe place to hide meds

• Keep medications in a purse or bag in your possession

• Never share your medications with anyone.

if someone needs pain medication they should consult their physician

• Never discuss your medications with anyone unless they have a need to know.

Nurses, Doctors, Pharmacist, Family member who picks up prescriptions

• Remove or mark out the labels when disposing of old medication bottles.

This prevents from anyone knowing your medication type.

• This also prevents anyone from possessing medication bottles with your name on them containing stolen medications. Know who is in your home, do not leave service providers alone in your home.

• If you suspect that your medication have been stolen or tampered with notify the police as soon as possible.

• Secure any remaining medications and provide any available documentation on the quantity stolen, date filled, and location filled, as well as possible suspects to the responding officer.


2851 Winchester Rd. Lexington, Ky 40509 859-299-0411 - switchboard 859-299-2727 - newsroom
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