Earlier this week the Baltimore Police Department posted on its Facebook page that it arrested a 36-year-old man named Keith Gladden for possession of a loaded weapon and illegal drugs.
According to the police, Gladden is a repeat offender. But it wasn’t his arrest that made the news, it was his handgun.
Immediately after the post went live, commenters started writing jokes about the age and style of the gun.
One commenter identified it as a derringer, which is a type of small pistol invented by gunsmith Henry Deringer.
Another pointed out the black tape around the handle.
But mainly, the turn of the century jokes kept rolling in.
But beyond the hilarious jokes in the comments, derringers are very dangerous and popular firearms in the city of Baltimore. According to Rolling Stone, it is the fifth most cited gun recovered from crime scenes.
The Baltimore Sun reports that pistols are the most prevalent type of traceable gun recovered from crime scenes. Most of the guns recovered were originally purchased in other states.
For many people living in Baltimore, the lighthearted comments were a welcome change on a Facebook page otherwise filled with press conference videos and crime reports. It was also a good public service reminder of the kinds of weapons that are being used in crimes and what they look like.