(UPDATE) Gawker getting death threats over NYC gun owners list

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UPDATE: John Cook, the Gawker writer who posted the list of gun permit holders, told Metro that, although he originally asked the NYPD for a list of permit holders for all firearms, some people have pointed out to him that the codes on the list are all for handgun permits.

Metro’s original story is below.

After publishing a list of the names of people who hold gun licenses in New York City, news outlet Gawker Media is receiving death threats, according to a post on their website.

Gawker writer John Cook posted a 446-page list of “every licensed gun owner in New York City” from the NYPD, which he said he has had since filing a Freedom of Information Law request in 2010.

This is following the fallout over a map the Journal News in White Plains published, showing the full names and addresses of “pistol permit holders” in Westchester and Rockland Counties. The Journal News recently had an Anthrax scare at their office.

Gawker, and Cook specifically, have emphasized the distinction between their action and that of the Journal News, namely that Cook did not publish addresses, only names.

Both the Journal News and Gawker have noted that these names are publicly available to begin with.

Following the post, a female Gawker employee reportedly unconnected to Cook’s post received a threatening phone call warning her and her co-workers to “look both ways because you’re going to get shot.” Gawker reported that they have informed the police of these threats.

When asked whether the people on Gawker’s list were actual verified gun owners or people permitted to possess a firearm who may not actually own weapons, two separate representatives at the NYPD’s Public Information department said that no one in the department at that moment knew of the Gawker report, or the death threats.

Cook confirmed that the listed individuals are permitted to own firearms, not necessarily verified owners.


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