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The New York News Journal, which was criticized by gun advocates for publishing the names and addresses of gun permit holders in two New York counties, will still publish the names of even more permit holders.
The News Journal had published maps of Westchester and Rockland Counties with the names and addresses of people with handgun permits. It said that the information is public record and was obtained from a Freedom of Information request.
The paper also requested information on Putnam County permit holders, but the information wasn’t ready when the maps were published on Dec. 22. Reuters reports that the paper still plans on posting the information from Putnam when it is available.
Overall, the News Journal found that there are approximately 44,000 gun permits in Westchester and Rockland Counties.
When the information was first published, gun advocates criticized the News Journal for invading gun owner's privacy. Christopher Fountain, a blogger, even posted the names and addresses of all those who work for the News Journal on his blog as retaliation.
“I felt they were using this to harass gun owners,” Fountain told CNN. “So I harassed them back.” He explained that the paper offended him and he “wondered how they would like it if their addresses were published.”
New York Republican state Senator Greg Ball said that he will introduce a bill to make permit information private except to those in law enforcement, notes Reuters.
The News Journal has defended posting the information. In another piece, the paper said that after the Newtown, Connecticut tragedy, residents of the region wanted “lawmakers to expand the amount of information the public can find out about gun owners.”