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W. Virginia Gun Permit Bill Pits Privacy Against Public's Right To Know

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Supporters of a bill aimed at
restricting public access to concealed weapons permit records are
trying a new tactic this year.

Previous bills have failed to win approval from West Virginia's
Legislature, but those were usually couched in terms of privacy.

Supporters of the bill this year say they don't want newspapers
and other members of the public to have access to the records as a
way of protecting victims of domestic violence.

National Rifle Association spokeswoman Ashley Varner says
publishing the names and addresses of permit holders in newspapers
can endanger the safety of domestic violence victims seeking to get
away from their abusers.

But Sue Julian of the West Virginia Coalition Against Domestic
Violence said the group is more concerned with the use of firearms
in cases of domestic assault.

The bill was expected to have a final vote by the full House of
Delegates tomorrow. But House leaders moved to delay that vote this
evening. If it passes, it will move to the Senate.


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