With all the talk about out-of-control gun usage lately, the NY Journal News has poured gas on the fire by publishing a database of gun owners by county.
Shortly after the Newtown shootings, the News filed Freedom of Information Law requests in Rockland, Westchester, and Putnam counties to uncover pistol-permit records. Despite some counties blocking gun-permit information, the paper managed to compile a list of gun owners in each area.
And the results are concerning at best.
Of its 16, 998 gun permits, Rockland County has 3,907 active ones. The remaining permits haven’t been active within the last five years. According to reports, the inactive permits include people who may have moved or died, since they never expire.
Westchester County offered names and addresses for its 16, 616 active permit owners. The Journal also managed to acquire limited information about the types of permits for the county.
Watch a gun owner talk about gun owner privacy:
Almost 5,000 Westchester residents have unrestricted permits allowing them to carry weapons at all times. Over 2,300 residents are permitted to carry guns for work. At least 6,900 residents have shooting permits and more than 11, 200 have target-shooting permits.
Putnam County responded to the Journal’s inquiry by noting it would take time to recover records, but estimated at least 11,000 permits within its borders. Gun proponents note that such access to gun owners’ information presents a danger.