Putnam County denies Journal News request for gun owner info; ‘I refuse to put lives in danger,’ says clerk

The publishers of the Journal News in suburban New York are still committed to outing gun permit holders, but officials in Putnam County held a press conference to let the public know they weren’t going to make it easy to expose residents there. “There is the rule of law, and there is right and wrong, and the Journal News is clearly wrong,” said Putnam County Clerk Dennis Sant. “I could not live with myself if one Putnam pistol permit holder was put in harm’s way, for the sole purpose of selling newspapers.”

State Sen. Greg Ball also spoke, calling the newspaper publishers “elitist eggheads,” adding, “I thank God that Putnam County has a clerk with the guts to stand up and draw the line here in Putnam County.”

The Journal News has already published an interactive, online map showing the names and addresses of permit holders in Westchester and Rockland counties, outraging many who consider the map not only an invasion of privacy but a handy guide for burglars. The newspaper obtained the names through the state’s Freedom of Information Law, but Sant said Putnam would not comply with the paper’s request. Residents at the press conference were reported to have given a standing ovation, and Sant has won fans online for his stand.

The legal wrangling is certainly just beginning, but in Putnam County, at least, there will be a fight.

Update:

Ball has uploaded the following news clip giving an overview of today’s press conference.

Related:

NY paper publishes gun permit holders’ personal info, gun rights advocates outraged

Map of the unarmed: NY newspaper’s gun permit map was a Christmas gift to criminals

Newspaper editor who published gun owners’ personal info protects her Twitter account

Eric Boehlert: Gun owners might as well be sex offenders

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