Gun owners outraged as newspaper publishes their details
AN AMERICAN newspaper has infuriated gun owners by publishing a detailed map with the names and addresses of thousands of people who own firearms.
'The Journal News' covers an area of New York state not far from Newtown, Connecticut, where 20 children and six adults were killed at Sandy Hook elementary school on December 14.
In the wake of America's worst school shooting, the newspaper requested publicly available information from local officials on residents with permits for handguns. It then published the details of 33,000 licence holders, in an interactive map on its website, and an article headlined: "The Gun Owner Next Door".
The newspaper said readers had a right to know if their neighbours owned firearms. It said about one in 23 adults in the area was licensed to own a handgun.
CynDee Royle, the editor, said: "We knew publication of the database would be controversial, but we felt sharing as much information as we could about gun ownership in our area was important in the aftermath of the Newtown shootings."
The newspaper asked officials for information about the type and number of weapons people owned, but those requests were denied.
Angry gun owners have inundated 'The Journal News' with phone calls, claiming their privacy has been invaded.
Tom King, president of the New York Rifle & Pistol Association, told the paper: "You're giving a shopping list to criminals. Does it matter if you own 47 guns or you own one gun?" (© Daily Telegraph, London)