Crime in the United States was down in 2012, but it rose three percent here in New Jersey, according to New Jersey State Police statistics.

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Tom O'Reilly, of the Rutgers Police Institute, says there have been what he terms, "pockets of violence" in some Jersey urban areas that skewed the State's crime stats.

In the city of Camden, a new one-year record for the city was set for the number of murders.

O'Reilly notes, "There's less police officers on the streets due to budget cutbacks and that has been partially contributory."

New Jersey got rid of more than 1,400 police positions in the year 2012. That was a six percent decline in the blue ranks.

O'Reilly says New Jersey police are trying to counter this reduction in their ranks with better technology and better intelligence about criminals and drug gangs and better information sharing from place to place.

Nationally, it is a different story. Crime declined in part because new immigrants helped stabilize previously unstable neighborhoods. O'Reilly says the new arrivals help police by helping keep an eye on what's going on.

Also as a population, we are aging. And older people tend to commit less crime.