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State Department of Social and Health Services to pay $9.75 million in child abuse settlment


OLYMPIA, Washington — The state will pay $9.75 million to five children who were abused by their parents.

The judgment filed Friday in Clark County Superior Court settles a lawsuit that was filed on behalf of the children last year, KING-TV reported ( ). Two of the children, who were adopted twins, were starved and beaten for years. Sandra and Jeffrey Weller are currently in prison. Sandra Weller was sentenced to 20 years last year and Jeffrey Weller received a 21-year term.

The lawsuit alleged that workers with the state Department of Social and Health Services either ignored or did not properly investigate dozens of warnings that the children, who are now between the ages of 13 and 19, were in danger.

In a written statement DSHS officials said they settled because their standard of practice at the time "did not rise to the level needed to protect these children from harm."

Information from: KING-TV,

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