"Nobody could be that tan. Wesley snipes isn't that tan," Anthony Ruccatano, owner of City Tropics Tanning in Nutley, New Jersey, told Metro.
Patricia Krentcil, the New Jersey mom accused of bringing her 5-year-old daughter into a tanning bed with her, frequented Ruccatano's salon until a couple weeks ago, he said. He denied that the overly-tanned mom ever brought her child into the bed with her, saying the tanning unit she used wouldn't even have room for the 5-year-old.
"There's no way I'd let a kid go tanning," Ruccatano said, adding that he has seven of his own children. He also acknowledged that he has never met Krentcil and spends most of his work day at another salon location. "We have been here a long time, we never have any problems."
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Ruccatano said his staff members have described Krentcil as "way out there" and that her home is rumored to have frequent visits from the local police. He also said that her current appearance is not a result of using a tanning bed, but some sort of self-tanner or makeup.
"She doesn’t look like that when she comes here," he said. "She is using some kind of self-tanner. I don’t know what the hell that is."
Krentcil pleaded not guilty this morning in Newark to charges of second degree child endangerment. She has adamantly denied bringing her daughter, Anna, into the tanning bed with her, but defended her own tanning habits.
"I find nothing wrong with tanning. To each his own. I like to tan,"
Patricia Krentcil said to CBS, — though considering her shockingly unnatural shade,
her opinion on tanning should go without saying.
The controversy began when 5-year-old Anna Krentcil, a fair-skinned redhead, showed up to school with a sunburn, then told the nurse she tagged along to her mom's trips to the tanning salon, and even went tanning herself.
Krentcil said her daughter only comes into the room with her while she is tanning. She insisted Anna got the sunburn from playing outside in the sun (with sunscreen on, of course).
"There's no room, A. B, I wouldn't permit it. C, it never happened," she said.
In New Jersey, tanning is illegal for children under 14, and those under 18 must have parental consent.