Golfer Scottie Scheffler facing 4 charges after being detained by police near PGA Championship

According to ESPN, Scheffler had failed to follow police orders during a pedestrian fatality investigation

NBC Universal, Inc.

Masters champion Scott Scheffler was detained by police early Friday in Louisville, Kentucky, on his way to the PGA Championship and is now facing charges, NBC News has confirmed.

Court records show Scheffler was charged with second-degree assault of a police officer, a felony, as well as third-degree criminal mischief, reckless driving and disregarding signals from officers directing traffic.

Source: Wave
Mugshot of PGA Golfer Scott Alexander Scheffler, arrested for assault on police after trying to enter PGA Championship venue.

Images showed Scheffler handcuffed as he was led to a police car.

Here's what we know so far about what happened:

Why was Scottie Scheffler arrested?

An AP report stated traffic was backed up for about a mile in both directions Friday morning on the only road that leads to Valhalla Golf Club, with dozens of police cars flashing red-and-blue lights near the entrance.

Police said a pedestrian had been struck by a bus while crossing the road in a lane that was dedicated to tournament traffic. The PGA later revealed a worker with one of its vendors was "tragically struck and killed by a shuttle bus" outside the Valhalla Golf Club.

"This is heartbreaking to all of us involved with the PGA Championship. We extend our sincere condolences to their family and loved ones," PGA America said in a statement.

ESPN's Jeff Darlington reported Scheffler drove past a police officer in his SUV, which was marked with the PGA Championship logo that identified it as a player vehicle. The officer reportedly screamed at him to stop and then attached himself to the car until Scheffler stopped about 10 yards later.

Darlington reported police pulled Scheffler out of the car, pushed him up against the car and immediately placed him in handcuffs.

“Scheffler was then walked over to the police car, placed in the back, in handcuffs, very stunned about what was happening, looked toward me as he was in those handcuffs and said, ‘Please help me,’” Darlington said. “He very clearly did not know what was happening in the situation. It moved very quickly, very rapidly, very aggressively.”

Darlington said police were not sure who he was. He said an officer asked him to leave and when he identified himself being with the media, he was told, “There’s nothing you can do. He’s going to jail.”

Darlington said another police officer later approached with a notepad and asked if he knew the name of the person they put in handcuffs.

Scheffler releases statement

In a statement later Friday morning, Scheffler described what happened.

“This morning, I was proceeding as directed by police officers.  It was a very chaotic situation, understandably so considering the tragic accident that had occurred earlier, and there was a big misunderstanding of what I thought I was being asked to do. I never intended to disregard any of the instructions. I’m hopeful to put this to the side and focus on golf today," he said. “Of course, all of us involved in the tournament express our deepest sympathies to the family of the man who passed away in the earlier accident this morning. It truly puts everything in perspective.”

What does this mean for the PGA Championship?

The PGA of America did not immediately have a comment, though it did delay the start of Round 2 of the tournament due to an "accident near the course."

In a following tweet, the organization said that all play of Round 2 would be delayed one hour and minutes from its originally published time. "Play of Round 2 will begin at 8:35 a.m.," the tweet said. "All spectator gates will open at 8 a.m."

Scheffler was seen on the course later Friday morning, but did not address the media upon his arrival.

What else to know about Scheffler

Scheffler is coming off four victories in his last five tournaments, including his second Masters title. He was home in Dallas the last three weeks waiting on the birth of his first child, a son that was born May 8.

Scheffler opened with a 4-under 67 and was five shots out of the lead as he tries to become only the fifth player since 1960 to win the first two majors of the year.

The 2024 PGA Championship, taking place at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky, began Thursday and runs through Sunday. Scheffler, the No. 1 player in the world, was set to start the second round at 8:48 a.m. He was due to play a little after 10 a.m.

Contact Us