LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - Within the last month, four elderly Lake Charles residents have been beaten and robbed. The latest victim an 85-year-old woman ambushed when she came home from church. The attacker covered her face, tied her hands with a wire coat hanger and hit her in the face. He then stole her purse containing cash and a cell phone.
Likely the most brutal of the four reported cases happened on Halloween night on Abear's RV Park. An 80-year-old man was nearly beaten to death and robbed while showing a rental property.
"He met with what he said was a black male, met him at the house. Walked in and at some point was attacked by that person and another one he never saw," said Clayton Hebert, victim's son.
The Call to set up the meeting was made on a payphone at a nearby Walgreen's. Surveillance video obtained from the store shows a maroon four-door Buick occupied by two black males believed to be the suspects. Investigators are also looking to talk with the driver of a gold Nissan Stanza, with no license plate and no yellow turn signals in the rear of the car.
"What we are trying to do is just get some justice here for our dad. We also have to get these guys out of our community because what grand paw is next," said Hebert.
On November 20th two grand paws would be next. Lake Charles Police were called to investigate two separate robberies within three hours. Both victims were elderly men and both were hospitalized after being hit in the head leading police to suspect they are connected.
"Sometimes the elderly don't report these types of crimes," said Sgt. Mark Kraus, Lake Charles Police.
Kraus says specifically in this case they believe there may be more victims and urges them to not feel embarrassed to report it.
"Hopefully, they'll give us some additional information on where we can lay our hands on the suspects in all of these cases. And two we want to where these crimes are committed so we can commit additional resources to that neighborhood," said Kraus.
The Calcasieu Council on Aging is also working to raise awareness to the clients they serve on a daily basis.
"There are so many elderly clients that are very vulnerable," said Debbie Duhon, CCOA Program Manager.
Duhon says a recent survey conducted showed crime issues were among the top concerns of Calcasieu's elderly. She says while they stress safety with their Meals on Wheels program, they'll soon provide monthly safety seminars with the Calcasieu Sheriff's Office to help them avoid being an easy target.
"We'll stress the importance of being aware of their surroundings and the resources out there to help them," said Duhon, "hopefully they will not wait until they are targeted to beef up on that information. They want to do that well in advance."
All of these crimes remain unsolved. If you've been a victim or have information that can help investigators, call Crime Stoppers at 439-2222. Reward money is available and callers can remain anonymous.