N.Y. Website Posts Map Of People With Gun Permits, Draws Criticism

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The website of New York's Journal News newspapers has posted an interactive map showing the names and addresses of people with licenses to own handguns in three counties just to the north of New York City — Westchester, Rockland and Putnam.

The data show permits have been issued to "about 44,000 people ... one out of every 23 adults" in the counties, according to the Journal News.

It adds that:

"The database, legally obtained from the County Clerks' Offices through a Freedom of Information Act request made after the shootings in Sandy Hook, Conn., that left 20 children and eight adults [including the gunman] dead, has been called irresponsible, dangerous and leaning toward intimidation by online pundits."

Now, the Journal News says it is coming in for strong criticism. "Thousands of people, many from outside Westchester, Rockland and Putnam counties, have taken to their computers and phones in rage," it reports. The critics say the database is "irresponsible, dangerous and leaning toward intimidation by online pundits."

Scott F. Williams, 41, of Haddon Heights, N.J., "called the newspaper's decision to link to the database 'highly Orwellian.'

" 'The implications are mind-boggling,' he said. 'It's as if gun owners are sex offenders (and) to own a handgun risks exposure as if one is a sex offender. It's, in my mind, crazy.' "

According to the Journal News, the map has also "been recommended more than 20,000 times."

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit

Source: NPR


More in:

Comments [2]

Ron Shirley

Out of curiosity I decided to click on one "dot" on the map to see what information was actually displayed. Amazingly the dot I chose was for a famous person, the actor Chazz Palminteri. So now everyone has access to his specific home address. I am sure that he finds that amusing.

At the risk of further violating his privacy, but to bring to the attention something that the newspaper might have overlooked I am going to paste the info from his "dot" here but X out the specific street address. If you choose, just like any other person with web access, even a stalker of Mr. Palminteri, you can do the research and come up with the remainder of his actual house address.

Address: XXXXXXXXXXXXX, Bedford, NY, 10506

So Journal News you have, with malice aforethought, placed this man's safety in jeopardy.

Dec. 26 2012 07:05 PM
Adrian Brown from New York

I find it amazing that this was permitted to be done... You have listed individuals who protect and serve on this list... Their names and addresses should not be public knowlege.

I realize that often times things are done because individuals fail to put themselves in the positions of others. How would you feel if someone just decides to produce a map locating all media personnel associates (names, address, etc)... How would you feel knowing that someone decided it was okay to put your families at risk?


Dec. 26 2012 04:04 PM

Leave a Comment

Email addresses are required but never displayed.

Get the WNYC Morning Brief in your inbox.
We'll send you our top 5 stories every day, plus breaking news and weather.


Latest Newscast




WNYC is supported by the Charles H. Revson Foundation: Because a great city needs an informed and engaged public


Supported by