MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Police statistics show Minneapolis is on track to record its lowest arrest rate in 17 years.

According to the statistics, the number of arrests is down nearly 9 percent through March 20 from the same period last year. The percentage reflects the number of arrests reported to the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting Program, including homicides, drunken driving and burglaries.

The Star Tribune reports that if the trend continues through the end of the year, it would be the fewest number of arrests since at least 2000.

The decline is largely fueled by a decrease in arrests for less serious crimes such as vandalism, prostitution and DWIs.

City Council President Barb Johnson suspects the trend is the result of demoralized officers reluctant to do their jobs out of fear of facing harsh scrutiny.