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Originally published Friday, March 15, 2013 at 7:42 PM

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Washington settles sex abuse lawsuit for $3M

Washington's Department of Social and Health Services says it has reached a $3 million settlement of a lawsuit brought by a young woman who was sexually abused by a staffer at a Lakewood mental health facility when she was a patient.

The Associated Press

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OLYMPIA, Wash. —

Washington's Department of Social and Health Services says it has reached a $3 million settlement of a lawsuit brought by a young woman who was sexually abused by a staffer at a Lakewood mental health facility when she was a patient.

In a statement Friday, DSHS also said the agreement resolves the woman's claims against the superintendent of the Child Study and Treatment Center at the time of the abuse more than a decade ago.

The state says the lawsuit alleged that supervisors failed to properly monitor a staff member who had sex with the young woman when she was a patient from 2001-2003. Center administrators fired the male staffer when the abuse was disclosed. DSHS says he later pleaded guilty to misdemeanor criminal charges.

Agency spokesman Thomas Shapley says DSHS "deeply regrets what happened to this young woman."

The agency's statement says supervision policies at the center have been strengthened in the past 10 years.

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