World No 1 Scottie Scheffler arrested after ‘misunderstanding’ ahead of the PGA Championship - Hindustan Times
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World No 1 Scottie Scheffler arrested after ‘misunderstanding’ ahead of the PGA Championship

May 17, 2024 07:12 PM IST

Scottie Scheffler was later released from custody. However, he faces a felony charge and other misdemeanours.

American professional golfer Scottie Scheffler was put in handcuffs early Fridayas morning, outside the Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky. Louisville Metro Police detained him “after a misunderstanding with traffic flow,” which resulted in the World No. 1 player driving past a police officer into the PGA Championship site.

TOPSHOT - This May 17, 2024, booking photo obtained from the Louisville Department of Corrections shows golfer Scottie Scheffler. Golf world number one, Scheffler, was handcuffed and taken into custody by police early on May 17, according to video footage and media reports, after allegedly trying to drive around traffic controls outside the PGA Championship at Valhalla. Scheffler was detained by a Louisville Metro police officer when he attempted to drive around the scene of an accident to get into the golf course, where he was scheduled to compete in the second round of the major tournament Friday morning. (Photo by Handout / Louisville Department of Corrections / AFP) (AFP)
TOPSHOT - This May 17, 2024, booking photo obtained from the Louisville Department of Corrections shows golfer Scottie Scheffler. Golf world number one, Scheffler, was handcuffed and taken into custody by police early on May 17, according to video footage and media reports, after allegedly trying to drive around traffic controls outside the PGA Championship at Valhalla. Scheffler was detained by a Louisville Metro police officer when he attempted to drive around the scene of an accident to get into the golf course, where he was scheduled to compete in the second round of the major tournament Friday morning. (Photo by Handout / Louisville Department of Corrections / AFP) (AFP)

ESPN's Jeff Darlington first reported the incident.

Earlier today, he tweeted: “World No. 1 golfer Scottie Scheffler has been detained by police in handcuffs after a misunderstanding with traffic flow led to his attempt to drive past a police officer into Valhalla Golf Club. The police officer attempted to attach himself to Scheffler’s car, and Scheffler then stopped his vehicle at the entrance to Valhalla. The police officer then began to scream at Scheffler to get out of the car. When Scheffler exited the vehicle, the officer shoved Scheffler against the car and immediately placed him in handcuffs. He is now being detained in the back of a police car.”

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Reportedly, traffic outside the renowned golf course had been halted after a man died on being hit by a bus around 5 am ET. He was said to have been struck in a dedicated lane for buses, as he was trying to cross Shelbyville Road. Media reports highlighted that the man died on the scene, according to the police.

What happened to Scottie Scheffler?

The ESPN reporter who witnessed the incident claimed that Sheffler was attempting to drive around the scene of the accident. Though a police officer called on him to stop, the player continued to drive towards the entrance.

He now faces the following charges: “second-degree assault of a police officer, third-degree criminal mischief, reckless driving, and disregarding traffic signals from an officer directing traffic.” While the assault charge is a felony, others are misdemeanours.

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Scottie Scheffler was ultimately released from custody at 8:40 a.m. ET. His attorney left it up to the player to decide whether to play in the championship's second round.

The PGA Championship's second round was reportedly delayed by 80 minutes. Taking to their X/Twitter, officials paid tribute to the deceased man whose life was claimed in the pedestrian fatality: "This morning we were devastated to learn that a worker with one of our vendors was tragically struck and killed by a shuttle bus outside 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.”

Two hours ago, officials announced in a formal statement, "Play of Round 2 will begin at 8:35 AM. All Round 2 Starting Times are delayed 1 hour and 20 minutes from the originally published time.

All spectator gates will open at 8:00 AM."

At the time of writing, Round 2 had officially begun. The PGA officials also shared a picture of the golfer on the range at Valhalla. His tee time is 10:08 a.m. ET.

Scottie Scheffler releases statement

Prior to Round 2, the World No. 1 player released an official statement, which was eventually shared by the PGA Tour on X/Twitter:

"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.

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."

 

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