Nutley ‘tanning mom’ headed for grand jury

Photo courtesy Splash News/ Into the dark: (l.) Patricia Krentcil in her pre-tanning days


Photo courtesy Nutley P.D./ as she appears today.


By Jeff Bahr

The case against Nutley’s infamous “tan mom” Patricia Krentcil was referred to a grand jury on Monday, June 4, according to Essex County Prosecutor’s spokesperson Katherine Carter.

Charged with child endangerment for allegedly taking her 5-year-old daughter into a tanning bed where, police say, the girl, now age six, subsequently suffered burns to one of her legs.

Krentcil, 44, has admitted that her daughter was in the room at City Tropics Tanning Salon, Nutley, where the tanning beds are situated, but has steadfastly denied that she was inside the tanning bed itself. Krentcil pleaded not guilty to the charge.

After the case is presented to the grand jury, the jurors can vote to either indict Krentcil or dismiss the case altogether. A plea arrangement may also be considered.

The unusual case made national headlines when it came to light in late April. Since then, Krentcil has given scores of interviews and made numerous talk show appearances in defense of her scorched appearance and uncommonly “dark” lifestyle. Her bizarre look has provided a wealth of fodder for late night talk shows and raised many questions about what is and what’s not appropriate when it comes to children and tanning. Currently New Jersey prohibits children younger than age 14 from using commercial tanning booths due to safety considerations. Anyone under 18 must have parental permission.

A bill now being considered by the state legislature would bar people under age 18 from entering commercial tanning salons.

Krentcil has gone on record saying that all of this hoopla stems from nothing more than envy. “There’s somebody out there my whole life that doesn’t like me because they’re jealous,” Krentcil told reporters back in May. She dismissed her detractors by adding, “they’re fat and they’re ugly.”

On a more positive note, Krentcil says her newfound notoriety has triggered reality TV show offers. “There are a couple of people that want me,” she told reporters from the gossip site TMZ. When asked if she’d consider doing Playboy, the deeply bronzed woman replied, “Of course.” A Playboy representative told TMZ that such an offer isn’t being made. “Simply put, ‘Tanning mom’ just isn’t Playboy material,” said the spokesperson.

Learn more about the writer ...