Commissioners to lawmakers: Restrict gun permit information

  • Posted: Tuesday, February 5, 2013 1:15 a.m.

SALISBURY — The Rowan County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to ask state legislators to restrict the public’s access to gun permit information.

In the wake of several media outlets posting information about gun permit owners in their circulation areas — although none in Rowan County — commissioners followed Gaston County’s suit, sending a formal request to the North Carolina General Assembly to outlaw the access.

Commissioner Mike Caskey said last week the resolution aimed to protect gun owners’ privacy and safety.

“Whether or not you own weapons,” Caskey told the Post Thursday, “I think it should be private. I don’t think it’s something other people should know about.”

The resolution had virtually no discussion at the meeting.

In the approved resolution, Caskey asks legislators to exempt the name, address, age and other information available from gun permit records.

A similar resolution was passed in Gaston County earlier this year.

Caskey said he hasn’t spoken to the Gaston commissioners, but the idea came from them.

Rowan County Sheriff Kevin Auten said Friday he supported the resolution to restrict access, but stopped short of saying he would defy the law.

“Sometimes there’s a need-to-know concern, and the law right now says it’s public records. Some people would look at it as invasion of privacy,” Auten said. “I don’t like the idea that it’s out there, personally.”

Contact reporter Nathan Hardin at 704-797-4246.

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