WARREN, Ohio - A Trumbull County judge rules against a possible settlement in a lawsuit filed against Trumbull County Children Services and three of its employees.
The case stems from the rape of an infant girl while under CSB's supervision. It alleges Trumbull County Children Services and three workers failed to prevent the rape of the child in April of 2011, even though they knew that the baby's natural father Cody Beemer, was a sex offender, and that the baby's mother, Felicia Beemer, had mental health issues.
Both are serving time in prison for their crimes.
Less than three months ago, Federal Judge Benita Pearson dismissed a $3 million lawsuit, because the plaintiffs indicated a settlement was reached. But the judge's ruling found the evidence in the case was strong enough for the lawsuit to proceed.
In Trumbull County Probate Court on Thursday, Judge Thomas Swift turned down the $150,000 settlement as recommended by the court appointed guardian ad litem. The guardian believes more money could be awarded given the judge's ruling and the facts surrounding the case.
"The settlement was reached before the decision was made, and the decision was fairly strongly worded, that made us reconsider," Michael Rossi says, attorney for the child's adoptive parents.
Attorneys on both sides of the case will move forward with the discovery process and could continue settlement talks moving forward. It's possible the case could go to trial as early as the summer of 2015 if a settlement is not reached.
"It might be a long road ahead, it might be a short road ahead, I really don't know," Rossi says.
The child's adoptive parents were appointed legal guardian of the child's estate. Their attorney says their clients intend to set all money aside for the child.