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Charges against Scottie Scheffler dismissed after arrest during PGA Championship

May 29, 2024, 10:26 AM

Jon Rahm, of Spain, puts the green jacket on winner Scottie Scheffler...

Jon Rahm, of Spain, puts the green jacket on winner Scottie Scheffler after the Masters golf tournament at Augusta National Golf Club Sunday, April 14, 2024, in Augusta, Ga. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

(AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Criminal charges against Scottie Scheffler have been dismissed, ending a legal saga that began with images of the world’s top male golfer being arrested and handcuffed in Louisville during the PGA Championship.

Jefferson County Attorney Mike O’Connell asked a judge Wednesday afternoon to drop the four charges against Scheffler, who was not required to be in the courtroom. The prosecutor said his team reviewed the case in a “thorough and expeditious manner.”

“Based upon the totality of the evidence, my office cannot move forward in the prosecution of the charges filed against Mr. Scheffler,” O’Connell said during the hearing that lasted less than 10 minutes. “Mr. Scheffler’s characterization that this was ‘a big misunderstanding’ is corroborated by the evidence.”

Scheffler was charged with a felony for assaulting a police officer with his vehicle, along with three misdemeanors. The arresting officer, Detective Bryan Gillis, was outside the gate of Valhalla Golf Course on May 17 directing traffic after a pedestrian death when he encountered Scheffler.

Scheffler, 27, was driving a PGA courtesy vehicle when Gillis said he “refused to comply and accelerated forward, dragging” Gillis to the ground. Gillis said his uniform pants were damaged in the fall and he was taken to the hospital for his injuries.

A surveillance video released by Louisville police last week showed Gillis pursuing Scheffler’s vehicle on foot and stopping him from entering the course. Scheffler is later pulled from the car and cuffed. But the video did not show Gillis’ first contact with Scheffler, authorities said.

Gillis has been disciplined for not activating his body-worn camera during the arrest. In a report on that failure, Gillis wrote that Scheffler had “demanded to be let in” the golf course.

Scheffler has said he simply misunderstood the commands coming from traffic officers.

The famous golfer spent a brief stint in a jail cell, then returned to the course for the second round. He finished the tournament tied for eighth place.

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