Reports of murder in New Jersey declined by 24 percent in the first half of the year, says the Philadelphia Inquirer. There were 158 homicides reported from January through June, compared with 209 during the same stretch in 2008. In Camden, frequently rated as one of the nation’s most violent cities, homicides were cut nearly in half over 2008 in the first six months this year–from 30 to 17.
Gov. Corzine tied the statewide decrease to his two-year-old antiviolence initiative. He said the numbers show “that we are winning important battles in the war against violent criminals and gangs.” The New York Times reported this week that homicides appear to be broadly falling in American cities, though there was no unifying explanation for that trend.