Photos of a young father’s face before he got it tattooed in jail are going viral.
New Zealand resident Mark Cropp, 19 years old, has had a tough time finding a job after tattooing “DEVAST8” across his jaw one drunken night in jail, the Daily Mail reports. But after a Facebook plea for employment, Cropp said he’s received so many job offers that he stopped counting when he reached 45.
Cropp’s brother designed the artwork to make him look tough after he landed in jail for a string of violent behavior. The tattoo was meant to be small at first, but the brothers got carried away while drinking homemade alcohol in jail made from fermented apples, sugar and bread.
“I went into jail with four tattoos and I came out with a full body suit,” Cropp told the Daily Mail.
“A week before I got out I taped a picture of my face to the inside of an envelope so my partner could see it — she was devastated, but now she likes it and can’t see me without it,” Cropp said.
The tattoo was inspired by Cropp’s nickname.
“There was a long time there where I would devastate everything I touched,” Cropp explained. “I would end up devastating everyone I met or got close to.
“They would be disappointed with something I had done or said,” he added. “I was always hearing, ‘That’s devastating.'”
Pictures of Cropp before his ink job have surfaced online. They show a baby faced “DEVAST8” before he went to jail.
Despite all the job offers, Cropp said he still hasn’t “done a day’s work.”
“I am just waiting for the right one to come about,” Cropp said, adding that many of the jobs require him to have a car.
“Until I get my first payc heck and get a car I won’t be able to get myself around,” he said.
Cropp said he also plans on having the tattoo removed.
“I am just working out a date to get it taken off, which sucks because it is going to hurt,” Cropp admitted. “And because this tattoo means something to me and my brother did it for me, so it is hard to make the decision to get rid of it.”
“But I know it is the best thing for my future, and I want to be a person my family can look to for support,” he added.
Cropp was jailed at age 17 for aggravated robbery, the New York Post reported. He pleaded guilty to a range of criminal charges, including aggravated robbery, escaping custody and assault with a weapon.
Cropp said he committed the crimes to support himself and his pregnant girlfriend after his parents’ kicked the couple out of their home.
Cropp now hopes to make some changes in his life.
“I have [learned] from my mistake,” he said. “I still don’t think people should be judged by the tattoos on their face, but I know it will keep happening unless I do something about it.”