YORK — A Retsof man is facing charges for unlawfully dealing with a child. Matt Troisi, 24, who has been working from his bedroom as a tattoo artist, entered a plea of not guilty in York Town Court for providing a tattoo on a minor, a 17-year old girl.
Troisi described the incident as an isolated mistake. The girl was brought to his home, he says, by “what used to be a good friend.” Troisi claims the friend told him the girl was 18. “I didn’t think about asking her for an ID, because he was such a good friend.”
According to Troisi, his service, which he provides from the bedroom of his home, is completely legitimate. “The Livingston County health department came to my home and inspected my bedroom. Other than that, you don’t need a license in New York State.” He says that he complies fully with health codes. “I use sterilized clean sheets, and throw them out when I’m done. The needles are disposable, and you can only use them once as well.”
The victim’s mother, Mary Clarke, disputed Troisi’s claims. “I had to go get my daughter tested for hepatitis and HIV, which cost me $20.” Clark, who herself sports two tattoos, says that she has no hard feelings towards Troisi, and that her biggest complaint isn’t about the tattoo itself. It’s about the girl’s age. “I hate to see him go to jail for something like this. Maybe a fine. But I hope others learn from this. The idea is to get the word out there: You can’t give minors tattoos.”
Troisi told the Genesee Sun that he has previous professional experience as a tattooist. “I worked at Final Touch tattoo shop in Mount Morris, and since I have been doing this on my own, from day one I have been trying to be legit.” Apparently, the publicity hasn’t hurt his business. “Because of this, I’m getting more calls then ever.” Regarding the man who he says brought the girl to his home and lied to him about the girl’s age, Troisi added, “It’s really too bad this has cost me a friendship.” Troisi, whose own arms are covered in tattoos, says he charged the girl $40 for the tattoo, which she paid in cash. The tattoo was a pink breast cancer survivor ribbon, with the names of two breast cancer victims. Located somewhere on the girl’s pelvis, it is about the size of a palm.
Troisi faces a possible punishment of three months in jail or a year on probabtion.
As far as the girl’s punishment Clarke said, “Let’s put it like this, life isn’t too pretty for her right now.”