A New Jersey mother has pleaded not guilty after she was accused of letting her 5-year-old daughter tan at a salon -- and the little girl ended up with a burn.
Facing a child endangerment charge, Patricia Krentcil, 44, entered the plea in a Newark court Wednesday and said she "would never permit" her daughter Anna, now 6, to go tanning, WCBS-TV reported.
Not likely to help her case, at least in the court of public opinion? Krentcil's own burnt sienna skin tone:
According to WCBS, the mother of five has admitted to bringing her daughter into the tanning salon room with her last month, but said she never allowed her daughter to get into the booth.
“It didn’t happen,” Krentcil told the station. “She’s six years old. Yes, she does go tanning with mommy, but not in the booth.”
But that's not what prosecutors are saying: They claim Krentcil took Anna right into the tanning booth, which caused a sunburn. When a school nurse asked the girl about the mark, she answered: "I go tanning with mommy."
New Jersey state law prohibits anyone under the age of 14 from using a tanning bed. The school notified child services and Krentcil was arrested a short time later.
Krentcil has said it's all a misunderstanding and that her daughter's burn came from a weekend outside gardening.
"It's a lie," she said of the charge. "She never went in there."
Krentcil is currently out on $25,000 bond and her daughter is in her husband's custody, the New Jersey Star-Ledger reported.
Still, she makes no apology for her own hue.
“I love to tan, as you can see,” she said. “I’ve gone tanning my whole life.”