Child, 10, Gets Tattoo, Gets Put in Foster Care

Ah, remember the halcyon days of fourth grade — riding bikes, chasing down the ice cream man, getting your first tattoo… wait, what?

Yes, a ten-year-old kid got a tattoo, and not surprisingly, social services has removed the little boy from his home after the tat and some other unspecified allegations came to their attention. Grandpa Jerry Garrison of Jacksonville, Florida is heartbroken over the department’s decision to move the kid to foster care for the time being, and spoke to press about the family’s unusual decision to allow the ten-year-old to get a tattoo in the first place.

It’s actually kind of heartbreaking to read, and Garrison explains that initial tattoos are somewhat of a family tradition. And the grandpa makes no effort to conceal or downplay the behavior, he just comments:

“I didn’t see why a tattoo was such a big issue to begin with, and I didn’t see where none of this was right.”

According to Garrison, Florida’s Department of Children and Families knocked on his son’s door with “other concerns,” but the tattoo was the real problem. He explains that DCF moved the kids to foster care, and says:

“My little son called me and said, Dad, I’m so scared, I want to come home so bad. When you have your youngin’ call and tell you he’s scared. I want to go put my arms around him and say son, it’s alright, it’s really alright. But no, I can’t.”

10 year old tattoo

Garrison adds:

“I ain’t never been in pain like this, it’s the worst pain I have ever felt in my life. In my whole entire life.”

According to a tattoo artist consulted by a local news source, tattooing a 10-year-old was actually legal, up until this year, with parental consent. But due to a change in laws, the minimum age is now 16 with parental consent, placing the kid well below that threshold.

DCF claims it was other allegations and not the tattoo that prompted the removal of the children.