Washington state OKs $19.3M settlement for foster child left blind, quadriplegic after beating

The state of Washington has agreed to settle a $19.3 million lawsuit filed on behalf of an 18-month-old girl whose alleged abuse at the hands of her presumed father left her permanently blind and quadriplegic, according to a Friday statement from a law firm representing the child.

The lawsuit, filed in Pierce County Superior Court, accuses the state Department of Social and Health Services of failing to adequately review the Texas home where it placed the child in 2015, the News Tribune of Tacoma reported.

The child's attorneys said the man with whom the child was placed severely beat her to the point where she will require special assistance for the rest of her life. The lawsuit maintains that the state ignored Washington and Texas records that indicated the man was a felon and a convicted domestic abuser.

INDIANA FOSTER COUPLE ABUSED MULTIPLE CHILDREN, FORCED CHILD TO PUT DIRTY DIAPER IN MOUTH: REPORT

According to the lawsuit, DSHS took the girl from her mother in Washington in June 2014 but did not clearly state why. The child was sent to live with her "father" and his wife in Austin, Texas, in April 2015. The suit does not definitively state whether the man is her biological father. The relationship was never confirmed by DSHS, the News Tribune reported.

"DSHS told the dependency court that there were 'no red flags' regarding the alleged father and strongly advocated that (the child) be placed with him," reads a statement by Ressler and Tesh, the law firm representing the girl.

"DSHS told the dependency court that there were 'no red flags' regarding the alleged father and strongly advocated that (the child) be placed with him."

— Statement by Ressler and Tesh, law firm representing the girl

The girl was admitted to a hospital in July 2015 with "16 rib fractures, liver and spleen lacerations, a brain bleed and facial bruising," the Dallas Morning News reported.

The man later admitted to investigators that he had severely beaten the girl because she had "gone to the bathroom on the living room floor."

THE LATEST: ABUSED CHILD'S FATHER HAPPY WITH GUILTY VERDICT

Tim Tesh, one of the girl's attorneys, said DSHS "utterly failed" to protect her.

"By ignoring serious warning signs that should have resulted in (the girl) remaining in a loving foster home, (she) was instead flown to Texas where she was placed with a man who was both a felon and a convicted domestic abuser," Tesh said.

"By ignoring serious warning signs that should have resulted in (the girl) remaining in a loving foster home, (she) was instead flown to Texas where she was placed with a man who was both a felon and a convicted domestic abuser."

— Tim Tesh, attorney for abused child

The girl, now 5 years old, is living in a group-care facility in eastern Washington state, Tesh said. The man was criminally charged for injuring the girl and is serving a 23-year prison sentence.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.