Columbia Daily Tribune: Highway patrol gave feds Missouri weapon permits data
A federal agent who received information on all of Missouri’s concealed carry permit holders decided not to pursue his investigation after obtaining a readable disc earlier this year.
That’s contrary to testimony in a hearing Thursday on the concealed carry list release, in which state officials told a Senate committee that the disc was never able to be opened because of a technical issue.
Somebody needs to clue the Governor in on what’s happening in his administration. For several weeks the Governor has denied that any data is being sent to a “magical database”. Yesterday, it was revealed that in fact, every person who holds a concealed carry permit in the state of Missouri had their information sent to the Federal Government – not once, but TWICE! The link to the article above gives you the details.
Testimony before the Senate Appropriations committee on Wednesday, April 9th and Thursday, April 10th revealed that the Department of Revenue (DOR) did place information about all concealed carry weapons (CCW) holders up on a website in November of 2011. This data was downloaded by the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP) and loaded up on a computer disc (CD) and sent to an investigator in the Inspector General’s office of – wait for it – the Social Security Administration! This was repeated in January of 2013.
The data was provided in response to a “law enforcement” request. It was supposed to be used for ferreting out those people who are committing fraud by collecting SS benefits claiming mental illness or related disabilities but are “well enough” to get a CCW permit. Never mind that the SS investigator has access to the restricted, secure law enforcement system that would give him that information on a person by person basis. Never mind that MSHP does not know how many people of the over 170,000 that have permits are on SS, they just turned all of us over to the feds without asking.
The tortured explanation of how it is legal to turn over a closed record such as the CCW permit information was painful. They couldn’t answer the question that even if the committee were to buy their explanation, just over 4,000 people have CCW on their license. Why did MSHP turn over all 170,000 plus records? The Senate Appropriations committee just didn’t buy explanation. They shouldn’t have!
One of the items that was supposed to be reassuring to all of us is that the information sent to the feds was so well encrypted that they couldn’t read the CD so they destroyed both of them. Now let me get this straight, the US Government does not have the tools to decrypt a CD from the state of Missouri? Of course this is of little solace since the data should never have been sent in the first place!
It was brought out that if these discs were indeed destroyed and they were for the purpose of a criminal investigation, then the investigator may have problems. The committee is going to ask for the investigator to appear before them to get first-hand information.
Bottom line was summarized by Senator Kurt Schaefer – the debate over whether there is a database (magical or otherwise) is over. There is one. The debate as to whether personal information is being shared with the Feds is over. It has been.
When will Governor Nixon get involved? If he follows the pattern of the Department of Natural Resources e coli and Department of Economic Development debacles it won’t be until he has figured out who to blame and fire! If you think Governor Nixon should step up and take responsibility for his administration, CLICK HERE.
Stay tuned for more!!!