Don’t be fooled, the teardrop tattoo placed next to the eye makes its wearer appear to be crying. This tattoo is typical in prisons and may signify a murder or death of a loved one.
Symbol of Murder
In North America, a teardrop tattoo signifies the wearer committed a murder. It is sometimes seen as a warning that the wearer will administer self-defense.
Symbol of Mourning
A teardrop tattoo may also represent friends or family of a prisoner who have passed while the wearer is incarcerated. According to Inkedblog.com, when the tear drop represents the death of a loved one, the tattoo implies that the wearer is unable to cry real tears and must use ink.
In Australia, the symbol is marked on convicts who are accused child molesters. According to Inkedblog.com, the mark is used as a justification for beatings and abuse while in jail.
In John Waters’ 1990 film “Cry-Baby,” Johnny Depp is shown in a prison scene getting a teardrop tattoo.
U.S rappers The Game and Lil Wayne have teardrop tattoos to signify the deaths of friends, and U.K. songstress Amy Winehouse got one in early 2000 to symbolize the grief for her then-incarcerated husband.