Pro golfer Scottie Scheffler arrested at PGA Championship

Posted at 9:37 AM, May 17, 2024 and last updated 10:54 AM, May 17, 2024

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Scripps News/Court TV) — Scottie Scheffler, who is ranked No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking, was arrested by police Friday morning outside the PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Course in Louisville, Kentucky.

booking photo of Scottie Scheffler

In this mug shot provided by the Louisville Metropolitan Department of Corrections Friday, May 17, 2024, Scott Scheffler is shown. Masters champion Scottie Scheffler was detained by police Friday morning on his way to the PGA Championship, with stunning images showing him handcuffed as he was led to a police car. (Louisville Metropolitan Department of Corrections via AP)

Scheffler faces four criminal counts, including assault of a police officer, criminal mischief, reckless driving and disregarding signals from officers directing traffic, according to court records. He was released shortly after being booked.

Scheffler was set to tee off at 8:48 a.m. Friday, but the PGA Championship was being delayed “due to an accident near the course.” Play was delayed by 80 minutes and resumed at 8:35 a.m. Scheffler’s tee time was pushed back to 10:08 a.m. when he began his round. He arrived at Valhalla nearly an hour before teeing off.

ESPN first reported that Scheffler had been detained and aired video of him being placed in the back of a police vehicle on Friday morning’s “SportsCenter.”

In charging documents obtained by Court TV, police said that a detective was directing traffic after an early fatal accident when Scheffler refused to comply with the given instructions. Instead, police said that Scheffler “accelerated forward, dragging Detective Gillis to the ground.” The detective suffered pain, swelling and abrasions and was taken to the hospital. The police report notes that Gillis was wearing a uniform and “hi-visibility yellow reflective rain jacket” at the time.

ESPN reporter Jeff Darlington, who witnessed the arrest, said Scheffler asked the reporter for help while he was placed in a police vehicle. An officer in the video can be heard telling a reporter, “Right now, he’s going to jail and there ain’t nothing you can do about it.”

screen grab of television display showing golfer's arrest

In this still image made from video provided by ESPN, Masters champion Scottie Scheffler is escorted by police after being handcuffed near Valhalla Golf Club, site of the PGA Championship golf tournament, early Friday, May 17, 2024. (ESPN via AP)

Steve Romines, a Louisville-area criminal defense attorney, told reporters there was a “miscommunication.”

“He did exactly as he was instructed to do to enter the premises,” Romines said in an interview aired by ESPN, adding that the golfer cooperated fully.

Scheffler, 27, tied for 12th place Thursday after shooting a four-under-par in the first round at the PGA Championship. The tournament is one of golf’s four majors.

He won the Masters in April, golf’s first major of the year.

This story was originally written by Justin Boggs for Scripps News, an E.W. Scripps Company.