Black Ink responds to woman’s lawsuit: Tattoo problems are your fault, not ours

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HARLEM (PIX11) -- Ceaser and Dutchess of Blank Ink fame are speaking out and not happy about a lawsuit against their tattoo shop.

“There are two parts to getting a tattoo. Getting the actual tattoo and the healing process,” said Dutchess. “Why would she name us in this lawsuit when she knew that artist was just a guest artist? They just saw us on TV with a season finale and said ‘let me hit them with a lawsuit’,” added Ceaser.

We first introduced you to Asabi Barner last week.  She traveled from South Carolina to New York City in 2014 for a cover-up tattoo from Black Ink. The shop, as many are aware, is hugely popular across the country because of its hit reality show on VH1.

While initially Barner was satisfied with her tattoo, she says the very next day it started to pus.  And now, one year later,  Barner claims she was left scarred and disfigured by that decision.

“In the intimate moments it creates a problem because you don’t have that confidence. I wasn’t overly confident before, but I felt good about myself. Felt good about my body, but it just changes you,” said Barner.

One year later, Barner said she’s still in pain and has scars and keloids and has to apply an ice pack nearly every single day.

While Ceasar and Dutchess were not the artists behind Barner’s massive cover piece, they do blame the client and believe her problems stem from improper aftercare.

We sat down with Dr. Michael Jones of Lexington Plastic Surgeons.  Dr. Jones specializes in keloids and scarring, particularly on African American skin.  While he can’t say who caused Barner’s nasty scars, he does say people need to be better informed and educated before getting a tattoo in the first place.

“You can’t really cast blame to the tattoo parlor for that.  If you’re keloid prone, you’re keloid prone,” said Dr. Jones.

After reviewing Barner’s photographs, Dr. Jones said, "They are on the border of what I would call a hypertrophic scar versus a keloid.”

As for the artist who tattoed Barner, Black Ink says the artist is no longer employed by them.  In fact, he was only a guest artist visiting the shop for a short period of time.