I’ve had a few conversations with gun owners who are worried about being targeted because The Gazette prints the list of people who renew or get a new concealed carry weapons permit each month from Linn and surrounding counties. We believe the public has a right to know who is legally carrying a gun, just as we all can readily identify a police officer or military officer. We also print charges brought against people who are found to have guns illegally. The people I’ve talked to are concerned that, because people know they carry, they may become the target of assault or home burglary.

I thought I’d go through The Gazette archives and look at all the burglaries in the past few years in which firearms were reportedly stolen. There have been only four that we reported, and one of those was at the home of a person who has a concealed carry permit. So, I suppose the fears aren’t totally baseless, but it’s not like they’re being victimized at a higher rate. I am also aware that many stolen firearms around here are taken during unreported burglaries, but I’m pretty sure those aren’t at the homes of diehard Second Amendment supporters. As a general fan of public information, I’d really hate for people to stop putting their names and/or addresses in the phone book, but I’ve gotta say — if you’ve got stuff you don’t want stolen, don’t give people the opportunity to find you.

The names of people who have concealed carry permits aren’t public record in some states. For example, Missouri keeps their list of concealed carry permits sealed. But I’m all for full disclosure of who’s packing heat — even if it were me. At least people should know what to expect if they tried to mug me, eh?


Two flags, one Marine Corps and one American, flew from Don King III’s porch during the flood that claimed the basement and first floors of his home. Until the flood receded, King, a Marine who served during the Vietnam era, used the flags as a landmark to find his home at 820 Eighth Ave. SW. He saw them as a sign of defiance, of strength in adversity. The water rose only high enough to graze their seams, King said.

Late last week, King noticed his Marine Corps flag was missing.

“How low can people get?” he asked. “Of all things, they stole my damn flag. It’s only worth $20, but it meant a lot to me … There are some real cretins out there.”

But King, 53, didn’t let it dampen his resolve. He’s still cleaning up, currently knocking out the drywall in his home. And he bought a new flag to fly.

Cedar Rapids police reported a woman had her purse stolen from her cart as she was loading groceries into her car Monday afternoon at the Wilson Ave. Hy-Vee. A woman in the passenger side of a car driving by simply leaned out the window and snatched it as it was sitting there. She didn’t even get out! The victim, 45-year-old Lynnice Wedewer of Cedar Rapids, apparently tried to stop them by grabbing onto the open window, but the man in the driver’s seat just kept moving.

Yesterday, Wedewer left this comment our story about the semi that crashed on I-380 yesterday.

On Monday at Wilson Avenue SW Hy Vee my purse was robbed and I was assaulted in front of my 10 year old daughter with autism after buying food from the store. 2 middle aged 1 male African American & 1 white female bigger build short hair. I am making public notice I have closed down my checks and cards. Stores beware, do not accept any checks or chrage cards for Lynnice Wedewer, USHE Sanctuary, or James Hartgrave. Do not accept a paypal mastercard or US Bank card for same. They are now closed. On Tuesday they bought gas at Caseys and may have used these accounts unlawfully in many other places. Convenience stores are an easy target for this team as they do not have to show ID’s we are asking you to help us alert the community to quickly shut them down. My family are asking if you have any info please call the police if you see them. We are asking if they are any witnesses to please contact the police. You just never expect it to be your family. Thank you for your help in stopping them from abusing our accounts.
Dr Rev Lynnice Wedewer, Ph.D

I was curious to see who this woman was, so I Googled her. Turns out she claims to have the mark of the Benjamin Tribe on her hand. Check out her web site here if you’re curious about the significance of this claim. She also apparently runs an online store that sells software to help you “unleash the power of your mind.”


Not that mine has, knock on wood. But when I read on the Des Moines Register’s Web site that burglars broke into the home of one of their public safety reporters, Nigel Duara, to steal his car keys and take his vehicle, I had to wonder…why is that any more important than when Joe Smith’s house down the street is broken into? Unless they left a note on Nigel’s fridge reading, “This is what you get for putting our names in the paper, you yuppie scum,” I don’t think it is.

Hmmm. I suppose it is slightly interesting. He is my competition, after all…anyway, you can bet that if my house gets broken into, I won’t tell you about it. At least until I track down the people who did it and crack them in the head with an ice pick.