The lawsuit against the City of Philadelphia for publishing gun owner details in violation of state law is moving forward:
Attorney Joshua Prince filed a motion this week in Common Pleas Court, requesting that the suit be sealed to avoid revealing the names of his five clients – and potentially hundreds of others if the case is granted class-action status.
In August, the city’s Department of Licenses and Inspections introduced a revamped website, featuring a map that allowed users to view the names and addresses of some gun owners in the city, and the specific reasons why they wanted a permit to carry a concealed weapon.
When the information was initially posted, Mayor Michael Nutter actually defended the posted information by saying that once gun owners appealed their license denials, they lost any right to privacy provided by state law and that the information could be obtained like any other public record. However, now Nutter’s office isn’t willing to make such an argument.
In fact, Prince actually went to test the theory by sending someone to the office that published the information with a written request earlier this fall. Not surprisingly, the request was denied because now the City acknowledges that it isn’t public information at all. So, Mr. Nutter, was your spokesman lying then or are your city workers lying now? I guess we’ll find out what the courts think soon.
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