The annual Unified Crime Report shows a 3% drop over the last year, with 1,161 violent crimes reported to Camden police. Robberies are down 14% compared to a year ago with 41 fewer incidents.
But there was a similar percentage increase in murder with three additional homicides, along with slight increases in rapes and aggravated assaults.
"Some of these things are just out of our control," County Freeholder Director Lou Cappelli told KYW Newsradio. "Nearly every murder last year was related to drug activity or gang activity. So what we need to do is a better job dealing with some of these crimes that are hard to stop."
Still, the downward trend in crime that started in 2013 when the county assumed control of Camden’s police force remains intact.
"We are satisfied with the progress we are making," he added. "Violent crime is down 42% since we started this police force. We still have a ways to go, but we’re happy with the progress being made."
And he credits the men and women on the force with making that happen.
Cappelli also believes that, outside of those involved in the drug trade and gang factions, most residents and visitors to Camden are safer these days.