The Dallas Catholic Diocese agreed Thursday to pay $2.5 million to a girl who was sexually assaulted six years ago by a parish child-care worker and who still suffers today, her representatives say, from nightmares and self-destructive compulsions.

"She used to be a very giggly little girly girl," said the mother of the girl, who is now a teenager. "Now she doesn't even like to wear dresses. ... Now she'll say, 'Mom, you don't know how bad I want to cut myself.' "

The settlement is the largest to date for victims of Julio A. Marcos, who worked at St. Pius X's child-care center for much of the 1990s. Eight girls have won a total of about $8.1 million in lawsuit settlements, attorneys for both sides confirmed.

Nonetheless, a statement posted on the diocesan newspaper Web site said, "Settlement terms were not specified, but parties said they were consistent" with those in the seven previous deals.

A ninth victim of Mr. Marcos has a suit pending. Additionally, a claim is pending from a victim of Patrick Willhoite, who worked with Mr. Marcos at the child-care center.

All the lawsuits accuse church employees of ignoring warning signs of abuse. Evidence and pretrial testimony showed that church officials left Mr. Marcos and Mr. Willhoite on duty after receiving warnings that they were behaving inappropriately with girls.

The diocese continues to deny negligence and to maintain that the men long managed to fool all the adults around them. According to the Web posting, diocesan officials credited their safe environment program "for alerting authorities and ... preventing continued abuse."

Randy Mathis, the Dallas lawyer who has defended the diocese in abuse litigation since the early 1990s, said he was pleased with the latest deal, which was reached as courtroom testimony was about to begin. He declined further comment.

The diocese has paid more than $45 million in abuse settlements over the last decade, much of it to victims of priests and much of it covered by insurance. About a dozen clergy cases remain unresolved.

Abuse-prevention programs begun in the 1990s should have protected the young girls at St. Pius, said the mother of the child whose case was settled Thursday.

The woman said her daughter was 9 in 2000 when Mr. Marcos repeatedly sexually assaulted her with his hands at the day-care center. Church representatives said the nature and extent of the abuse was not clear.

The mother said that she was grateful to have money now for the girl's long-term care and that some church representatives had apologized to her.

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