Sheriff’s Office Is Being Criticized For Tweeting About Santa Getting A Hidden Handgun License
The Sheriff’s Office for a Colorado county, where a mass shooter killed six people this year, has been criticized on Twitter for sharing a photo of Santa applying for a license for a concealed weapon.
The El Paso Sheriff’s Office in El Paso County, Colorado shared the controversial photo Dec. 3, which shows a man with white hair and a long white beard wearing his Christmas costume as he signs documents.
“Guess who got his concealed gun license today?” They wrote.
But while the office seemed a little light-hearted, Twitter users were shocked, calling the tweet “horrific,” “disgusting,” and particularly insensitive given that El Paso County had a deadly mass shooting this year.
The El Paso Sheriff’s Office in El Paso County, Colorado shared a photo of Santa applying for a license for a concealed weapon
“Guess who got his concealed gun license today?” they wrote
The tweet shows “Santa” wearing red suspenders over a shirt with cute animals in Christmas clothes.
An employee enters his application and Santa holds his pen over a digital signature reader.
“Did you know that the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office has issued 49,750 concealed handgun permits and another 2,560 is awaiting issue?” They wrote.
According to the Colorado Springs Gazette, the gun-carrying Santa was very real.
El Paso County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Lieutenant Deborah Mynatt said the man came in for a concealed gun license, and they thought it would be a fun “educational moment” on Twitter.
But commentators are disgusted and scold the office for deleting the tweet and “reading the room.”
Twitter users were shocked, calling the tweet ‘rude’, ‘disgusting’ and ‘a terribly bad decision’
“Disgusting,” wrote one commenter. “That interaction with children has no place with hidden guns. Do those to whom you issue these permits know how to lock down and secure their firearms? Do they have training on firearms safety? You actively make society less safe, instead of ‘protecting and serving’.
“Frankly, as an Australian, this sort of thing illustrates very nicely the US’s completely insane and deeply unhealthy relationship with firearms,” said another.
“This is insanely wrong,” wrote a third. “I appreciate your hard-working staff doing their job… But guns aren’t ‘cute’, they’re deadly, serious responsibilities. You should be ashamed. And I suspect by this point you know that posting this was a terribly bad decision. Do it better. Correct your mistake.’
“This is dirty, Santa Claus is for children. Advertising guns to children is terrible and they are legally not allowed to have one. Christmas is a time of peace and joy, not of weapons and division. Ask any Jesus,” interrupted a fourth.
‘Uh. Stop. This is deeply disturbing and at odds with the love and care implicit in the Saint Nicholas/Santa mythos,” a fifth chided.
Many also pointed to the tragic shooting at a school in Oxford, Michigan last week
One said the post indicated that a person’s “professional judgment has been impaired.”
‘What is your message to children here? Does Santa have a legal concealed weapon? To protect against fairies, reindeer, children who take a look on Christmas Eve? There is already enough fear among children,” said the spokesperson.
“This is really tacky, EPSO,” said another. “I’m sure it wasn’t meant to be anything but fun, but with another school shooting this week, and loads of kids worrying about it, posting this only heightens their fears. And turn parents off. Please think it over and apologize.’
Several have also pointed out that Colorado has its own history of deadly mass shootings — and the country of El Paso itself had one seven months ago.
In May, Teodoro Macias, 28, killed six people and then himself at a birthday party.
“Wasn’t there a terrible mass shooting in El Paso not long ago?” asked one commentator. Wasn’t there another school shooting this week that killed 4 kids? Now is not the time to push this product. Please delete your tweet immediately.’
Several have also pointed out that Colorado has its own history of deadly mass shootings — and the country of El Paso itself had one seven months ago (Pictured: A memorial outside the home where six were killed in Colorado Spring in May)
The Sheriff’s Office has since disabled comments and responded to the comment
“EPSO was meant to showcase our employees in the concealed pistol licensing office, not to be insensitive. Santa corresponds to the month of December and we thought he would help recognize our hard-working staff,” they wrote
Many also pointed to the tragic shooting at a school last week in Oxford, Michigan.
“I sit here in downtown Oxford, MI, waiting for the candlelight vigil to pay tribute to four students killed by a gun smuggled into the school. But above all, tell children that Santa carries a concealed weapon,” one wrote.
“The families of the children slaughtered in Oxford, MI, would like to talk to you. My daughter, whose best friend is fighting for his life over a self-inflicted gunshot wound, would love one too. THIS IS A REASON THIS KEEPS HAPPENING,” another tweeted.
Others shared photos of the victims.
The Sheriff’s Office has since disabled comments and responded to the backlash.
“EPSO was meant to showcase our employees in the concealed pistol licensing office, not to be insensitive. Santa corresponds to the month of December and we thought he would help recognize our hard-working staff,” they wrote.
Lt. Mynatt, the spokesperson, also touched on last week’s school shooting in particular.
“Our hearts go out to everyone involved,” she said.
Jealous boyfriend slaughtered six in Colorado birthday massacre – ‘because he didn’t get an invite to the party’
By Adam Schrader and Ruth Styles in Colorado Springs, Colorado, for Dailymail.com
The Colorado massacre suspect, who killed six people in front of three young children, had argued with the family the weekend before Mother’s Day, police said.
Teodoro Macias Jr., 28, killed his girlfriend Sandra Ibarra, her brother Jose Ibarra and her sister Mayra Perez, 32, in the early hours of Sunday morning blaze at a Colorado Springs home, police said at a news conference.
Macias had “a history of jealous and controlling behavior” toward Ibarra,” Colorado Springs Police Department Lieutenant Joe Frabbiele said afterwards.
Sandra Ibarra was in a relationship with Teodoro Macias Jr, 28, since 2020. Her relatives said he was “quiet” and “serious”
Relatives identified the victims as Joana Cruz (left), who would have turned 54 this week, and her son Melvin Perez (far right), who would have turned 31 this week. Also killed was Perez’s wife, Mayra Perez (right)
“This behavior was especially evident when she tried to isolate her from her family and made her efforts to avoid attending family events,” Frabbiele said, though she didn’t elaborate on these claims.
The three other victims were Mayra’s mother-in-law Joana Cruz, 53, and her two sons, Melvin Perez, 30, and Jose Guttierez, 21. Macias also committed suicide on the spot.
Police said Macias had argued with the family at an event at another house the previous weekend.
“The suspect… had a relationship with Sandra Ibarra for a year. He was not invited to the family gathering and there are indications that he was distressed by the lack of invitation,” Lieutenant Joe Frabbiele said, referring to last weekend’s event.
Sandra Ibarra (left) and her brother, Jose (right), were among seven people shot and killed Sunday at a birthday party in Colorado Springs. Sandra’s friend, Teodoro Macias Jr, 28, was the shooter
Joana Cruz’s 21-year-old son Jose Guttierez was also killed in the mass shooting
Chief Vince Niski said the family did not know or warned that he would be coming Saturday.
“We think he just showed up, went into the mobile home and started shooting,” he said.
Frabbiele added that no previous incidents of domestic violence between Macias and Ibarra had been reported to the police, Macias had no criminal record and no civil court rulings such as a protection order had been issued.
Later, when asked how the police knew Macias was angry at not being invited, Lieutenant Frabbiele said, “We’re investigating the way they communicated, including their phones, so we’re working on that at the moment.”