KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Wedding photographer Mario Antoine was arrested Thursday in Kansas City and charged with 10 felony counts, all related to scamming brides on their wedding day.
The last time FOX Four Problem Solvers spoke with Antoine in person was more than a year ago – when we tracked him down at his Kansas City apartment to ask him about weddings he was paid to shoot, but never even bothered to show up for.
Antoine had multiple excuses as to why he was a no show. He said, in regards to one wedding, he felt threatened because the bride had left him an angry voice mail. The voice mail, however, was left just minutes before the bride walked down the aisle and only after she realized Mario was not going to show.
As far as the second wedding, he blamed the couple, saying they had violated their contract. But new victims kept coming forward, including Robert Prutsman.
Mario had actually shot the Prutsman wedding, but he never gave Prutsman or his wife the photos. Something that Prutsman said put a huge cloud over what should have been the happiest day of his life.
It wasn’t long after that interview that Mario Antoine left Kansas City and moved to Nashville where he was soon convicted of staling his roommate’s guitar and pawning it. In fact, he’s still on probation for that conviction when he was picked up Thursday by Kansas City Police on a warrant obtained by the Missouri Attorney General’s office, which has charged him with 10 felony accounts, all related to scamming brides.
Antoine is now being held on a $25,000 bond.
When news of his arrest got out, victims, including Robert Prutsman, were elated.
“It’s definitely something to be happy about,” Prutsman said. “It’s a little peace throughout this entire situation. Does it change the fact that I don’t have wedding photos? Absolutely not. But to know he’s actually getting punished for what he’s doing, fantastic, fantastic.”
Prutsman says two years may have passed since his wedding, but his memory of Mario Antoine hasn’t faded.
“It’s not water under the bridge,” said Prutsman. “It’s still very real for the couples who were victims.”