Home of gun Owner outed by Journal News burglarized ***UPDATED*** database removed by Journal News
Two handguns and two pistol permits were stolen from the New City home of a man whose name and address are listed on the website of a local newspaper as possessing gun permits, police said.
The thieves ransacked the house Wednesday night, breaking into two safes on the home's third floor and stealing a third safe. The guns were in the stolen safe, police said.
Clarkstown police said they had no evidence the burglary was connected to the controversial map.
"The burglary is still under investigation, and there are no facts to support this correlation at this time," Clarkstown Sgt. Joanne Fratianni said in a statement. "If the investigation develops further information, it will be released accordingly."
Family members at the burglarized home refused to speak publicly Thursday, and police are keeping reporters off the property on the quiet suburban street.
"At this early point in the investigation, we believe it is a random crime and the home was not targeted," Clarkstown Det. Lt. Charles Delo told News12.
The burglary comes less than a week after a White Plains homeowner -- who also was listed on the Journal News website as having gun permits -- arrived home to find his home burglarized, with jewelry missing and an attempted break-in of his gun safe. The thieves were not successful, and no guns were stolen.
White Plains Police Commissioner David Chong said Monday that it was "premature" to connect that burglary to the website listing but said it was part of the police investigation.
The guns that were stolen in New City included a .45-caliber Colt revolver and a .22-caliber Iver Johnson. Cash, U.S. savings bonds and jewelry were also stolen.
The homeowner's stolen pistol permits were for Rockland and Orange counties.
The Journal News has come under criticism from elected officials and police groups for posting the interactive map Dec. 23 that showed the names and addresses of all legal gun permit holders in Westchester and Rockland counties.
The newspaper has not responded to numerous calls for comment.
The head of the White Plains Police Benevolent Association, Robert Riley, has been one of the fiercest critics of the Journal News map, saying it puts the lives of police and ordinary residents in potential danger.
"The Journal News printed a virtual treasure map for criminals," Riley said Monday. "It lets the bad guys know who is vulnerable, due to not having a gun permit, and where to go if they wanted a gun."
with Sarah Armaghan
New York newspaper removes gun permit database from website after outcry
Published January 18, 2013
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – A suburban New York newspaper that outraged gun owners by posting the names and addresses of residents with handgun permits removed the information from its website Friday.
The Journal News took down the data just three days after the state enacted a gun control law that included privacy provisions for permit holders.
The provisions were a reaction to interactive maps the newspaper published on LoHud.com that pinpointed thousands of permit holders in Westchester and Rockland counties.
Gun rights activists had immediately complained that permit owners' privacy was being violated. They said the map could guide burglars to their homes while police groups claimed the map could lead ex-convicts to the officers who had put them away.
The addresses of some Journal News staffers were posted online, and threats were called in to the newspaper's offices. The newspaper hired armed guards in response.
Janet Hasson, president and publisher of The Journal News Media Group, said in an emailed statement, "While the new law does not require us to remove the data, we believe that doing so complies with its spirit."
She said the maps had been viewed nearly 1.2 million times since they were published Dec. 23. The newspaper sought the records under the state Freedom of Information Law after the Dec. 14 elementary school shooting in Newtown, Conn., where a gunman who had killed his mother at home killed 20 first-graders and six educators and then committed suicide.
The maps remained online late Friday but could no longer be manipulated to find names and addresses.
State Sen. Greg Ball, the most vocal opponent of the posting, said, "Thank God The Journal News has finally realized the error in their judgment and done the right thing. ... I am proud to have passed legislation keeping The Journal News from doing this ever again."
On Tuesday, as part of a gun control bill, the state Legislature passed and Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed new regulations that give permit holders several ways to opt out of the public record.
Applicants can ask to be exempted because they are police officers or served on criminal-case juries or are victims of domestic violence. They also can just say they might be subjected to harassment.
Hasson said Friday, "One of our core missions as a newspaper is to empower our readers with as much information as possible on the critical issues they face, and guns have certainly become a top issue since the massacre in nearby Newtown, Conn."
Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/us/2013/01/18/new-york-newspaper-removes-gun-permit-database-from-website-after-outcry/#ixzz2IRezYVti