‘Please help me’: World No.1 golfer ‘going to jail’ as PGA Championship rocked


Golf’s world No.1 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.

ESPN reported the US Masters champion failed to follow police orders during a pedestrian fatality investigation.

Traffic was backed up for about a mile in both directions 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.

Truly unreal scenes at Valhalla right now. World No.1 golfer Scottie Scheffler arrested for a misunderstanding about traffic and entering the club. https://t.co/3pAK5rk2mB

— Evin Priest (@EvinPriest) May 17, 2024

ESPN said Scheffler, who was to start the second round at 8:48 am local time (10.48pm AEST), drove past a police officer in his SUV with markings on the door indicating it was a PGA Championship vehicle.

Scheffler reportedly drove past an officer, who screamed at him to stop and then attached himself to the car until Scheffler stopped about 10 yards later.

ESPN’s Jeff Darlington watched the incident unfold. He said police pulled Scheffler out of the car, pushed him up against the vehicle, 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.”

World No.1 Scottie Scheffler has been arrested in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Ben Jared/PGA TOUR via Getty Images)

The PGA of America did not immediately have a comment.

The start of the tournament’s second round was delayed by 80 minutes, meaning Scheffler was not due to play until soon after 10am.

With cars backed up in the morning darkness, other PGA-marked vehicles tried to move slowly toward the entrance. Traffic finally began to move slowly a little before 7am.

It was a surreal start to Friday after what already has been a wild week of weather, with the image of the Masters champion and top-ranked in the world, dressed in workout clothes, with his hands in cuffs behind his back amid flashing flights.

Darlington said police appeared to be not sure who Scheffler 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.”

Scottie Scheffler’s mugshot from Louisville Metropolitan Department of Corrections. pic.twitter.com/bcJn54Nu5x

— Golf Digest (@GolfDigest) May 17, 2024


— Min Woo Lee (@Minwoo27Lee) May 17, 2024

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 is coming off four victories in his past five tournaments, including his second Masters title.

He was home in Dallas for the past three weeks awaiting the birth of his first child, a son born May 8.

Scheffler opened the tournament on Thursday with a four-under 67 and was five shots off the lead in his quest to become only the fifth player since 1960 to win the first two majors of the year.

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