Handguns turned in are seen during a gun buyb
Handguns turned in are seen during a gun buybReuters

A local New York newspaper that had sparked outrage after publishing an interactive map that showed the names and addresses of thousands of residents who have gun permits, is being protected by armed guards after receiving  “a large amount of negative correspondence” from disgruntled citizens.

The Journal News sought the records of gun holders under the state Freedom of Information Law after the Sandy Hook Elementary school massacre, justifying the decision by saying that readers had expressed concern regarding which of their neighbors might have firearms.

The armed guards, which were hired from local private security companies, have been stationed at newspaper headquarters and at a satellite office in West Nyack, N.Y., since last week, said Janet Hasson, the president and publisher of The Journal News Media Group.

“The safety of my staff is my top priority,” Hasson told The New York Times.

The Journal News reported on Wednesday that emergency officials were called to its offices after one of the newspaper’s employees opened an envelope in the mail containing a suspicious white powder.

The newspaper said there were no evacuations and the employee underwent decontamination procedures.

White Plains Public Safety Commissioner David Chong told the newspaper that preliminary tests determined the substance to be non-toxic.