Scottie Scheffler details his wild Friday morning arrest and how he climbed into the 2024 PGA Championship top 5

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Scottie Scheffler can’t be stopped; you can only hope to detain him.

The 27-year-old was arrested by Louisville Metropolitan Police early Friday morning and faces four charges after a misunderstanding while trying to enter Valhalla Golf Club, the host of this week’s 106th playing of the PGA of America’s flagship event.

But after being handcuffed, fingerprinted and having his mug shot taken, he was released on his own recognizance and went out and made six birdies to shoot 5-under 66 at Valhalla Golf Club.

Scheffler was so locked in during his second round of the 2024 PGA Championship you never would have known he was locked up just hours before his tee time.

Scheffler was booked at 7:28 a.m. ET, released at 8:40 a.m. ET and finally made it to the course less than an hour before his tee time. He walked off the course at 9 under, T-3 on the leaderboard, and trailing only leader Collin Morikawa among those in the clubhouse. Scheffler conceded it wasn’t easy but after a couple of holes he was able to get into his bubble.

“Coming out here and trying to play today was definitely a challenge, but I did my best to control my mind, control my breathing,” he said. “As far as best rounds of my career, I would say it was pretty good.”

2024 PGA Championship
2024 PGA Championship

Scottie Scheffler putts on the 11th green during the second round of the PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club. (Photo: Clare Grant/Louisville Courier Journal)

That may be the understatement of the year. When Scheffler arrived at the 10th tee, his first hole of the day, the crowd erupted in a chant of Scott-Tee! Scott-Tee! There were shouts of “Free Scottie” as well as cracks of how well he was playing with an ankle bracelet, whether golf was his work-release program and some supporters with a little extra time on their hands made mug shot T-shirts before heading to the course. Overall, the reigning Masters champion was treated to a new level of love that was reminiscent of a home Ryder Cup.

“I didn’t really know what the reception would be like,” he said. “I felt like they were cheering extra loud for me today. I really do. I know sometimes you can’t really see it on my face, but I really do enjoy playing in front of the fans.”

Despite all the distractions and a limited warm-up, Scheffler birdied two of his first three holes (with his lone bogey in between) and was in control of his round from start to finish. He added circles to his scorecard on Nos. 18, 2, 4 and 7, and is once again in contention in a major coming off his 2024 Masters victory.

Scheffler was shaken to his core by the experience of being handcuffed and booked at a police station. He said he shook uncontrollably for more than an hour and even after the round noted, “I feel like my head is still spinning. I can’t really explain what happened this morning.”

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After being led away in handcuffs from his tournament-issued courtesy vehicle, Scheffler chatted with an officer in a police car on the way to the station, and said that helped settle his nerves. While he was waiting to be booked, he approached that same officer and asked him, “Hey, excuse me, can you just come hang out with me for a few minutes so I can calm down.”

Scheffler said he was never angry. He was just in shock.

“It was definitely a new feeling for me,” he said.

2024 PGA Championship
2024 PGA Championship

Fans watch golfer Scottie Scheffler on the the 17th green during the second round of the PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club. (Photo: Matt Stone/Louisville Courier Journal)

Scheffler commended the officers at the police station and said that they made several jokes with him while he waited.

“This one older officer looked at me as I was doing my fingerprints or whatever, and he looks at me and he goes, ‘So do you want the full experience today?’ I kind of looked at him, and I was like, ‘I don’t know how to answer that.’ He’s like, ‘Come on, man, you want a sandwich?’ I was like, ‘Sure, I’ll take a sandwich.’ I hadn’t eaten breakfast yet. I mean, they were really kind,” he said.

Waiting in his cell, Scheffler could see himself being discussed on ESPN and could make out the time and that the start of the second round had been delayed, moving his tee time to 10:08 a.m. ET.

“I was like, well, maybe I could be able to get out,” he said. “I started going through my routine (including stretching) and I tried to get my heart rate down as much as I could.”

Tee times were delayed for 80 minutes after a PGA vendor, John Mills, was hit and killed by a shuttle bus on the road in front of the golf course. Scheffler was attempting to maneuver around the traffic stoppage due to the fatal accident when his interaction with police occurred.

“My sympathies go out to the family of Mr. Mills,” Scheffler said at the start of his press conference. “I can’t imagine what they’re going through this morning. One day he’s heading to the golf course to watch a tournament. A few moments later he’s trying to cross the street, and now he’s no longer with us. I can’t imagine what they’re going through. My heart – I feel for them. I’m sorry.”

Scheffler is facing the following four charges: Assault in the second degree of a police officer, criminal mischief in the third degree, reckless driving and disregarding signals from officers directing traffic. He has retained local attorneys for the case and has an arraignment scheduled for 9 a.m. ET on Tuesday, May 21.

“My situation will get handled,” he said. “It was a chaotic situation and a big misunderstanding.”

During a steady rain, Scheffler recorded his 43 consecutive round of par or better dating to the Tour Championship in August. One week after the birth of his first child, the world No. 1 is seeking his fifth win in his last six starts and to become the first player since Jordan Spieth in 2015 to win the first two legs of the career Grand Slam. The last reigning Masters champion to win the PGA Championship was Jack Nicklaus, in 1975 at Firestone Country Club. Scheffler is well-positioned heading into the weekend at the PGA and it seems as if even the surreal circumstances of getting arrested hours before his tee time can’t stop Scheffler from breaking par.

“It was a very confusing and chaotic situation, but I did my best to just follow instructions and do as I was told as I was sitting there handcuffed,” Scheffler said. “I’m glad to be out here competing, doing what I love.”

Story originally appeared on GolfWeek