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KSL temporarily suspends firearms listings on ksl.com

Published: Tuesday, Dec. 18 2012 8:16 p.m. MST

KSL has temporarily suspended firearms listings on KSL.com classified ads.

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SALT LAKE CITY — KSL has temporarily suspended firearms listings on KSL.com classified ads.

In a statement issued Tuesday afternoon, KSL management expressed its profound sadness over last week's mass shooting in Newtown, Conn., where a gunman killed 20 children and six faculty members of Sandy Hook Elementary School. The shooter also killed his mother and himself.

"In the wake of this and other similar incidents, important questions have been raised about the ease of access to guns. These questions deserve time for careful consideration and we are confident that an appropriate resolution will be found. Accordingly, KSL has temporarily suspended firearms listings on KSL.com classifieds," the statement said.

While managers said they recognize the suspension may inconvenience responsible citizens who have used the service, "we feel this an important step while these broader societal issues are examined," the statement said.

Chris Lee, president of Deseret Digital Media, who oversees ksl.com and deseretnews.com, said managers felt, during a time of national mourning, that it was appropriate to temporarily suspend the online classified advertisements on both websites.

"Especially during this time when the country is feeling so much sadness, we feel it's the best decision to pause our involvement in the firearms marketplace," Lee said. 

The decision is among others being made around the country as a nation continues to mourn the loss of life in the Connecticut shooting.

DICK'S sporting goods announced Tuesday it had removed guns for sale in its store nearest to Newton, Conn. It has also suspended the sale of modern sporting rifles in all of its stores.

The decision was made out of respect for the victims of the school shooting as well as their families, DICK'S officials said in a statement.

The National Rifle Association of America released a statement Tuesday that it would not comment on the Connecticut slayings until later this month. 

NRA members "were shocked, saddened and heartbroken by the news of the horrific and senseless murders in Newtown.

"Out of respect for the families, and as a matter of common decency, we have given time for mourning, prayer and a full investigation of the facts before commenting," the statement said.

It went on to say that the NRA "is prepared to make meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again."

As businesses, organizations and politicians search for a thoughtful response to the mass shooting, some states have reported higher numbers of individuals applying for gun purchases or concealed carry permits.

Colorado authorities, for instance, reported a record number of single-day background check submissions for potential gun purchases on Saturday. Some 4,150 were submitted on that day alone, eclipsing the previous record of 4,028 on Black Friday.

Dwayne Baird, spokesman for the Utah Department of Public Safety, said background check submissions for Utah were up 20 percent year-to-date over last year, but the bureau did not experience a spike in applications over the weekend.

According to Utah's Bureau of Criminal Identification, there were 19,441 regular requests to purchase or redeem firearms during the third quarter of 2012 in Utah, most in Salt Lake, Weber, Utah and Uintah counties.

There were 395,651 valid Utah concealed firearms permits as of Sept. 30, 2012, according to the report. 

E-mail: marjorie@desnews.com

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