TOPEKA — A civil lawsuit filed in Shawnee County District Court in a long-running dispute alleges the Kansas Department for Children and Families protected a state official instead of his young daughter.

The legal action claims the plaintiff’s civil rights to due process and equal protection were violated.

Abuse was reported as far back as 2001. In 2005, a physician said the girl suffered spanking that left bruising and represented child abuse. Abuse was reported again in 2008.

The girl has since turned 18 and aged out of the system.

The lawsuit alleges that DCF “began defending the abuser rather than the child abuse victim contrary to the statutory constructs requiring the opposite.”

The girl’s father was described as “a prominent State of Kansas official” who worked for the Kansas Department of Transportation.

“The initial goal of the agency was to protect their own state of Kansas official,” the lawsuit reads.

DCF declined to comment.

“Despite the fact that the events in this suit occurred prior to the current agency administration, we are unable to comment due to pending litigation,” DCF said in a statement to The Topeka Capital-Journal.

It also claims that evidence was destroyed or manufactured, and that the defendants engaged in a conspiracy involving violation of regulations and court orders.

Several related cases have been filed leading up to the latest lawsuit, which highlights violation of the plaintiff’s right to a fair hearing throughout the abuse investigations, breach of duty and negligence, among other offenses.