Foster parents in Seattle are suing the Department of Social and Health Services over an adopted 12-year-old boy who allegedly molested all of their other children, KIRO-TV reports. Trish and Steven, who gave only their first names, have three adopted and four biological children, and one of the latter (an 8-year-old boy) began making lewd gestures last year. The boy said the gesture explained what his older brother had done to him. "I was getting scared," says Trish. "Then he said, 'He does this to our other one too.' I lost it. I was crying." Soon the other kids confirmed similar experiences, saying they'd kept quiet because Trish had said adults can't touch them that way—but didn't mention that children can't do it, either.
The parents' lawsuit alleges that a social worker failed to inform them about the boy's previous incidents. "I also found there was a safety plan put in place for him in another home, where he wasn't even supposed to be in the same room as younger children," says Trish. When they complained to the DSHS, Steven says, the department began investigating the parents, and now refuses to comment on the litigation. "We do not intend to try the case in the media," says a spokesperson. But KIRO-TV reports that a memo in the lawsuit, from a state office for children and family, calls the decision to place the boy with Trish and Steven "unreasonable." Meanwhile, the family is keeping the boy with Steven's parents, the Daily News reports. "Throwing him away is not an option," Steven says. "He's still our son."