The California Department of Justice briefly published the home address information of every concealed carry permit holder in the state on Monday.
Firearms policy publication The Reload surveyed the tool’s Los Angeles County data, finding that 244 permit holders were authorized to carry as judges.
The database contained the home addresses of the judges, a potential security threat.
California Attorney General Rob Bonta touted the database as introducing transparency on state concealed carry processes.
California isn’t exactly a state known for transparency, raising questions as to why the state’s attorney general is prioritizing the release of information on private citizens who legally own and carry guns.
After reporting on the database on Tuesday, the utility went offline, suggesting the release of personally identifiable information could’ve been unintended or a mistake.
“Vindictive sore loser bureaucrats have endangered people’s lives and invited conflict by illegally releasing confidential private information,” California Rifle and Pistol Association President Chuck Michel told The Reload after the leak.
“CRPA is working with several legislators and sheriffs to determine the extent of the damage caused by DOJ’s doxing of law-abiding gun owners. Litigation is likely.”
Some personally identifiable information was removed from the database before it was shelved entirely.
However, California law does protect the home address information of state officials such as judges and prosecutors from release, a law the state Department of Justice appears to have flouted.
Here’s the only CCW info that can be (but isn’t necessarily required to be) withheld from public disclosure. Everything else is open to disclosure, including application docs, fingerprints, and copies of licenses. See Cal. Govt Code 6254(u) and Cal. Const. Art. I Sec. 3(b). pic.twitter.com/QSyl8pnKqP
— Firearms Policy Coalition (@gunpolicy) June 28, 2022
As of Tuesday afternoon, a representative for Attorney General Bonta’s told The Reload, “We are investigating an exposure of individuals’ personal information connected to the DOJ Firearms Dashboard.
“Any unauthorized release of personal information is unacceptable. We are working swiftly to address this situation and will provide additional information as soon as possible.”
It’s unusual for a state attorney general to release an open database of concealed carry permit holders to the public.
This isn’t even the first time that California has released information on gun owners.
In 2016, the California Department of Justice accidentally leaked the personal address information of every registered firearms instructor in the state, according to RedState.
At the time, Kamala Harris was the California Attorney General.
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