Unlike some states it is illegal to tattoo a minor under the age of 18, even with parental consent. This is how Odessa Clay, 30, of Greensboro, N.C., ended up in jail. The heavily inked mother used her own equipment to tattoo her 11-year-old daughter after she requested a small heart outline. Clay stated that she did not know it was illegal in N.C. to tattoo anyone under the age of 18. She is now facing one count of tattooing a person under the age of 18.

“She asked me to do it,” Clay told ABC News affiliate WCTI-TV, adding that she only drew a heart outline and did not fill in the shape. Clay also believes that an ex in-law turned her in because of a previous family dispute involving the daughter’s paternal grandfather.

Although it is the law in North Carolina, I personally don’t see the big deal. The only concern I would have deal with the sterility of the equipment used, especially since she’s not a licensed tattoo artist, but you don’t have to be licensed to purchase the equipment. Although a tattoo is somewhat permanent, that is if you don’t have the money to have it removed by laser, if it’s a simple outline of a heart in an inconspicuous area what harm could it actually cause? But, of course the law is the law and unfortunately changing laws just isn’t an easy thing to do.

What do you think? State law aside, do you think it’s ok for a parent to give a child permission to get tattooed?

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  1. No. This is an 11 year old. She doesn’t have good judgement. Parents are supposed to have better judgment and say no to things.

  2. Afrostyling

    She should be jailed. If the child saw a gun and said she wanted it, would she give it to her? Dumbass!

  3. Mademoiselle

    I wish more parents had the courage to stand up to their kids when they ask for things. Hopefully everything was sterile, and the girl isn’t allergic to any of the chemicals. I’m not a fan of making permanent (or semi-permanent) alterations to a child’s body. Now, it’s still legal to pierce an infant’s ears, but I’d probably vote against it if it ever came up for the same reason. Feed them, clothe them, and keep them safe from harm — that’s about as much control parents should have over a kid’s physical being. Everything else done to their person should be reserved until they’re adults choosing for themselves.

  4. LocsandJoy

    This is a horrible lede! “Unlike some states it is illegal to tattoo a minor under the age of 18, even with parental consent.” Clutch please hire a better editor ASAP.

    • Said the person that doesn’t know how to use commas

  5. FattyQ

    Jail?! Um no the punishment does not fit the crime here. I personally do not have any tattoos but looking at the mother’s pic, it was probably inevitable that her daughter would want one. A tiny heart outline is an easy compromise for an 11 year old who looks up to her mom.
    This has nothing to do with guns. Nothing to do with her decision-making regarding guns. This is hardly a jail worthy offence.