People with unwanted tattoos across Southern California were outraged Thursday after they say several laser tattoo removal clinics suddenly closed without warning and customers were left wondering if they would get a refund.
Many were also only part-way through the tattoo removal process, which they said is painful and takes at least several appointments.
The doors were locked at a Dr. Tattoff location in Montclair Thursday, said to be a "celebrity trusted" nationwide company on its site.
Some customers didn't even know the clinic in Montclair was closed and showed up for scheduled appointments.
"I had an appointment scheduled for 11:30, and I showed up and it looks like they're shut down," Nadia Cintron said.
All day long, customers were coming to Montclair clinic wondering why the doors were locked.
They said they never got any warning that the clinic was closing down.
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Many of them had driven from far away to get their tattoos removed because the Montclair location was the only one in the Inland Empire.
Customers said they have been trying to call for more information as well as other locations in Orange County and the San Fernando Valley, but they keep getting voicemails during business hours.
NBC4 reached out to Dr. Tattoff as well as Violet Medical Group, which according to a sign inside the clinic, owns the location. Both companies have not yet responded.
Many of the customers said they were angry as they had paid hundreds of dollars in advance.
"I drive at a distance and nobody got back to me. They've obviously just locked the doors on several people, several clients, and that is unjustified to me," Tiffany Curtner said.
Curtner drove in rush-hour traffic from Riverside to Montclair for a 10:45 a.m. appointment to finish removing a tattoo on her ring finger. She already paid $584 toward the appointment.
NBC4 called D. Tattoff locations in Orange County and the San Fernando Valley, and got similar voice messaging systems.
"They didn't even have the audacity to tell me," Amanda Santella said.
In Sherman Oaks, customers said they were worried they wouldn't get a refund.
"If they continue to charge me I'll be pretty upset, but it is what it is," Elijah Diaz said. "I guess I'm going to have to find somewhere else which is pretty inconvenient because this place is pretty close to home."
Customers weren't the only ones angry: employees at the Montclair clinic said on Monday they suddenly got a text from their bosses telling them they no longer had jobs.