GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - An artist that Target 8 found running an illegal tattooing business out of his home last year now has a job at a legitimate tattoo parlor.
Doctors say in-home tattooing is a health risk for the entire community. Tainted tattoos could spread Hepatitis A, B, and C, staph infection MRSA or HIV. And more people are doing it than you might think.
Last year, Chastity Miles contacted Target 8 when someone gave her 15-year-old son a tattoo without her permission.
"The health issues were my main concern when I saw it," she said.
David Anible wasn't the person who tattooed Miles' son, but he was one of the illegal in-home tattoo artists that Target 8 found in February 2012.
After Target 8 informed him that what he was doing was illegal and that the health department was warning him to stop, he shut down his in-home business.
"I guess I'm gonna be forced to now," he said at the time.
And Anible stuck to his word. A manager at Pain For Sale saw Target 8's story and reached out to him. The shop discovered Anible had years of experience working in tattoo shops and gave him a chance.
"You guys kind of brought it to my attention and thank God for Pain For Sale wanting to give me a shot or I wouldn't even be tattooing right now," Anible told Target 8.
Pain For Sale owner Jeff Jones sees some of the worst when an illegal ink job goes bad.
"A lot of staph infections, MRSA," he said. "A lot of really really nasty stuff."
That's why artists are required by law to work out of a licensed facility that is inspected regularly.
Now that Anible has a legitimate job, he's often the one fixing a tattoo inked illegally in someone's house.
"It's time to put away your machines and do it the right way," he advised in-home artists.
The Kent County Health Department investigated seven artists in 2011 and four in 2010. But it only investigates artists when it gets complaints.
If you know someone tattooing out of their home in your neighborhood, you can file a complaint with the state online.
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