Judge OKs $305,000 settlement with child services agency over Ohio infant raped by parents


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WARREN, Ohio — A child raped as an infant by her biological parents during a partially supervised visit would receive payments under a $305,000 settlement between her adoptive parents and a children services agency they sued in northeast Ohio.

A county judge approved the settlement involving Trumbull County Children Services on Wednesday. The settlement is worth twice as much as an earlier agreement that a judge rejected. It covers legal fees, a $25,000 payment for the girl when she's 18 and then about $1,300 in limited monthly payments after she turns 21, the Warren Tribune Chronicle (http://bit.ly/1sISGL3 ) reported.

The adoptive parents' lawsuit claimed the agency and three of its employees were responsible for deciding that the baby's biological parents got partially unsupervised visits — with workers checking in at roughly 15-minute intervals — despite the biological father having been convicted of raping a 3-year-old relative.

In a statement, the children services agency still disputed its liability but said the settlement "provides for increased confidentiality to protect the child while assuring that the maximum amount of resources are devoted to her rather than spent on fees and expenses associated with an extended, adversarial legal proceeding," the newspaper said.

A federal judge had allowed the couple's lawsuit to proceed earlier this year, ruling that the children services board and its workers aren't entitled to immunity sometimes granted for public employees or entities.

The girl's biological parents, Cody Beemer and Felicia Banks Beemer, pleaded guilty to rape and other charges and were sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole.

The child's adoptive parents appeared in court Wednesday, and the adoptive mother told the judge she preferred the structured settlement rather than an alternative trust arrangement.

Information from: The Tribune Chronicle, http://www.tribtoday.com

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