Privacy of Concealed Carry Permit Holders


Staff member
How much privacy do you have when you have a concealed weapon? Recently, a list of Arkansans who carry concealed weapons was published on-line. While some think it's useful, other thinks it could be dangerous.

These lists have been published in several states. Recently, in Arkansas on the Arkansas Times website. They obtained the list legally and say it's important to know who has a gun. They say those wanting to be protected should be exempt from the list. Regardless, a house member filed a bill Tuesday protecting the privacy of those who hold permits.

"The whole idea of a concealed handgun is so people won't know you have it," Representative Randy Stewart(D) of Kirby said. Representative Randy Stewart received several calls after a list of the around 65,000 Arkansans who hold concealed carry permits was published on-line.

"Over the weekend I got several distraught phone calls. They were from people with concealed handgun permits. They were upset their information was on the web," Stewart said.

Since then, the list was taken down, but Stewart wants to make sure this doesn't happen again, mainly for safety reasons.

"Some of these are women who have protective custody order from x-spouses; they now know where they live," Stewart said. Tuesday, Stewart filed a bill that would protect the privacy of those with concealed handgun permits.

"It will still be available to law enforcement, or for any court proceeding, but will not be out there to put on a website for public information," Stewart said.

He says publishing the names and addresses of people with concealed carry permits, is taking part of their liberty.

“I think we're just getting to much information out there that is of critical and sensitive matter and the bill I will file will attempt to prevent that," Stewart said.

A similar bill was recently filed in Tennessee. For 12 years, Tennessee legislators rejected similar legislation, but this year, they've added a fine for unauthorized publication and they say this time it could pass. The bill here in Arkansas should go before the legislature this week.

Source: Arkansas Matters

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Unfortunately, the person who posted that link originally in the AR Times either did not care who he hurt or caused trouble for. This has been mentioned on his blog and he just ignores it, but what about the abused spouse who got a CW permit to defend herself (and her kids?). Before this they were somewhat safer because the ex didn't know where to find them. Now they have to keep looking over their shoulder. Just because of the thoughtless act of one anti-gun person.

Or to give another example: My brother had a permit. He was in a wheelchair and lived with my mom. Mom always felt a bit better (we don't live in the best neighborhood) knowing he had a gun if some druggie or other type of criminal element showed up and got stupid.

My brother passed away on the 11th of last month. My mother is now concerned that with the posting of his (and her) address, that she may now be the target of someone who sees an "easy target". "After all, if he had a permit, then there must be guns in the house that we can steal, right?"

This on top of just losing one of her sons the same month the list was published. She is now frantically trying to sell off all his guns. Although she has kept a couple of them because she now feels that she may need them.

There is now a bill before the House (House Bill 1623) to make this information not so readily accessible to just anyone. From what I have heard on the news, it did pass the House.
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Thankfully the SC legislature passed that legislation last session and I think that it and a few more lists should be unavailable to the general pubilc. One thing that SC did was that if you already had a list then you were required to destroy it.

On the House floor Friday, members approved HB 1623 by Rep. Randy Stewart, D-Kirby. The bill would make the names and other information of holders of permits to carry concealed handguns exempt from the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act.

Stewart said he filed the bill after a weekly newspaper made a list of the state’s permit holders available to readers.

“You apply for this … permit with a reasonable expectation of privacy. That’s why it’s called a concealed handgun,” Stewart said. The bill passed 98-1.


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