State agency pays $3.1M after placing girl with rapist

(Information from: The Columbian,

VANCOUVER, Wash. (AP) — The former foster parents of a girl who was taken from them by the state Department of Social and Health Services and placed with her biological father — a convicted child rapist — have settled a lawsuit for $3.1 million.

The Columbian reported Thursday that the Vancouver couple and the agency reached the settlement in February.

The foster parents, who have since adopted the now 10-year-old girl, say the money will go toward her care, with court oversight.

An agency spokeswoman said the agency believes the settlement provides the means for the child to get the care she’ll need to recover.

Randall Abel pleaded guilty in 2015 to child molestation, communicating with a minor for immoral purposes and two counts of assault in a related criminal case. He was sentenced to 17 years in prison.