They're being called the Silver Tsunami. Seniors are forming partnerships called Triads to fight crime. Active and engaged, seniors say they are on the front lines and can help law enforcement.
"We have to take the streets back," said Rachel Cooper after she tipped off police to gang activity in her neighborhood. "It's not all the public safety director's problem. It's our problem. We live here."
Seniors cooperating with law enforcement is at the core of this community policing program. Triad groups are composed of active seniors, law enforcement and support groups like AARP. Triad groups are like silent hammers in their communities and they want to let criminals know they're a force to be reckoned with.
Edward Hutchison is national triad program director.
"So you get the older adult volunteers, you train them on the crimes that are being committed against older adults in their communities and then they go out and talk to older adults," Hutchison said.
Seniors say they're not going to be messed with anymore. Twenty-two states are represented at the national Triad conference in Indianapolis. There are 25 Triad groups in Indiana alone.
"They are the grass roots effort," said Hubert Humphrey, the Assistant Director of the Office of Protection of Older Americans. "They are where the action takes place."
Humphrey, who is the son of former Vice President Hubert Humphrey, works to help seniors with the Office of Protection of Older Americans and he says the work of the Triads nationwide is very important to everyone’s safety.
"When you combine the prevention efforts that Triad has with the law enforcement efforts then you have the best possible effort to stop those scam and con artists that are trying to rip off older Americans," Humphrey said.