Are Baretta and Luger hand-guns the same thing?

I’m reading two reports on a shooting and they describe a pistol differently. The judge in the criminal proceedings describes the individual as armed with a Luger, while a fatalities inquiry into the same episode refers to him having a Berretta.

It’s clear he only had one pistol. Are these just different ways to describe the same thing?

Beretta 92 (pretty typical Beretta)
ETA: As it happens, they do fire the same round, 9x19mm also known as 9mm Parabellum. Which was the Luger’s original chambering.

Are these witness reports? If they are, I wouldn’t be too concerned. I’d guess that vast majority of people can’t identify a gun’s make with just a quick glance, moreso when it’s being held and/or fired.

If those are the two reports that I heard, I’d be curious about what made the person that said Luger use that term. If you look at Running Coach’s link, Lugers have a pretty distinct look to them. Granted, a random person may not think anything of it, but most people that know even a little about guns would recognize that.
On the other hand, when I hear Beretta, I picture a small gun. I could be totally wrong about that, but in my somewhat uniformed opinion, that’s what I associate them with. IOW, I don’t think someone would use it interchangeably with the word ‘gun’, but they may use it (incorrectly) to mean ‘small gun’. Just like if someone had a large pistol, a random person might call it a Smith and Wesson.

Also, now that I think about it, I wonder if somewhere along the line Ruger turned into Luger. A shooting with a Ruger would make a lot more sense than one with a Luger. As far as guns go, I thought Lugers were more along the line of collectables than OC/CC.

It’s possible that “Beretta” refers to the manufacturer of the pistol whereas “Luger” might refer to the caliber of the pistol. Beretta handguns are commonly chambered for the 9mm Parabellum cartridge which is also called “9mm Para”, “9x19mm” and “9mm Luger”. So it might be like referring to a shotgun as both a “Mossberg” and “12 gauge” or a machinegun as both an “M-240” and a “.30 cal”.

See the top paragraph here:×19mm_Parabellum

Or someone misidentified a detail about the gun or used the term “Luger” like people sometimes use “Kleenex”.

That’s my guess. But, I’d guess that if someone was going to do that, they’d go with Beretta (or even Glock) before Luger. Seems like an obscure brand to pick out of a hat. That’s actually why I was more curious about it. Does the person who said Luger know what a Luger is, was it random (like Kleenex), did they say Ruger?

Old people, and I mean personal experience with World War 2 ‘old’, may go to “Luger” as their first thought when thinking of a European 9mm pistol. As noted, like every pistol is a Glock now, or every revolver a Colt or Smith & Wesson. (Insert, “Journalists’ Guide to Guns”.jpeg here).

FWIW, the Beretta pistol that most people likely think of when they think of one, the Model 92, is not a small pistol by any stretch of the imagination. Beretta does make smaller ones of course, like the Pico and Nano.

Not that a 92 is anything like the size of a Desert Eagle or N-frame Smith revolver, mind. It’s just a full sized service semiautomatic pistol akin to a 1911 or Glock 17 in size. People do CC those, though.

Period Lugers with matching parts are crazy expensive. I think the judge was just referring to another way of describing the 9 x 19 mm handgun cartridge, like calling the pistol a Parabellum. Beretta does make other pistols besides the 92 in 9mm x 19, FWIW.

Not witness reports, no. The Queen’s Bench judge in his sentencing decision refers to the deceased as having a Luger, but the Provincial Court judge sitting in the fatality inquiry refers to it as a Barretta.

Northern Piper, did the deceased go to bed with a price on his head? Or have a fondness for large white birds?


As to the size of the pistol, both judges refer to it as the deceased carrying it in his waistband. That doesn’t sound comfortable for a large pistol?

Only if it goes off.

Fair point! :smiley:

Related question: the deceased is referred to as having a “Heckler & Koch .308 semi-automatic rifle”.

Is that the same thing as a Heckler & Koch G3? Are any of the pictures on this wiki page accurate for that description?

I would like to add a picture to the wiki article on this event, but knowing how precise gun-owners are about technical issues, I want to use a correct picture.

The method is often called Appendix In Waist Band Carry. AIWB for short. People do it with pistols like a 92—though like you, I don’t understand it. See, e.g., a discussion on doing it with a full sized (Government Model) 1911 here:

First of all, the make of pistol in question is “Beretta”, short for Fabbrica d’Armi Pietro Beretta, which is the oldest continuously operating firearms manufacturer in the worlds. Baretta was a fictional police detective played by Robert Blake, and (Bill) Barretta is a puppeteer with the Muppets Studio.

The 9x19mm round, which is a standard round used by all NATO-affiliated militaries, many law enforcement agencies, and a wide array of private shooters, is officially identified as the “9mm Luger” by the Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute (SAAMI), which sets industry standards for the manufacture of weapons and ammunition.

As previously noted, the Beretta Model 92-type pistols are chambered in 9x19mm/9mm Luger. This is a very popular pistol in military and law enforcement (was the M9 sidearm in the US Department of Defense since 1985, and was a common issue duty pistol with police departments like the LAPD). Referring to a pistol generically by its chambering is a fairly common manner of reference. While a large pistol it can be carried in the waistband, although it is best carried in some kind of a holster to secure and protect it from negligent discharge as well as protecting the user’s clothing from wear and oils on the pistol.


Hmm. The QB judge just uses the term “Luger”, but the Provincial Court judge refers to it as a “Beretta 92 FS”. I think the more precise description is likely more accurate.

The wiki page on Beretta 92 has a picture identified as a Beretta 92 FS. Is it accurate?

As I said, I knew that gun folk are precise in their terminology. thanks! wouldn’t want to get a muppet in trouble! :stuck_out_tongue:

So a firearm can be referred to either by its manufacturer, or by the round it chambers, and both are acceptable?

In this case, the deceased was not a fashion plate, I gather, nor thinking long-term, so a few oil stains likely were not an issue.

Stuffed in a waistband? That’s incredibly stupid. Put in a proper inside waistband holster? May or may not be comfortable, depending on body frame (tall & skinny) and dress. If concealment is a concern, smaller is better.

Don’t add a picture without knowing for certain what it means. They make several .308 rifles so it is difficult to know. HK417 is the current main output.

I wouldn’t do it, it’s a bit like referring to a Windows computer as a “Microsoft.” It’s presumably a Beretta, in 9mm (Luger)

Yes. For example I could ask you to hand me my .45. You would then likely ask “Which one?” since I own ones made by Taurus and AMT. Neither one is made by Colt, even though the chambering is .45 ACP (Automatic Colt Pistol.) I could even be referring to one of the revolvers, although those are in .45 LC (Long Colt.) Manufacturer and Model Number are the more precise designations.

The judge referring to the weapon as a “Luger” was just a bit strange in his nomenclature.

I’d chalk it up to reporter error. To my mind, chambering for the 9 aside, they are nothing alike and could not be mistakenly identified as such.