Prosecutors Drop All Charges Against Golfer Scottie Scheffler

AP Photo/Matt York

Those of us who have been chanting “Free Scottie” have gotten our wish. Prosecutors have dropped charges against Scottie Scheffler, the reigning Masters champion and number-one professional golfer, after an incident where a misunderstanding between him and traffic cops led to his arrest on May 17.


The Athletic reports:

Jefferson County prosecutors dropped charges against world No. 1 golfer Scottie Scheffler on Wednesday, as county attorney Mike O’Connell said the office would not pursue criminal action following Scheffler’s arrest during a traffic jam outside the PGA Championship.

O’Connell motioned to dismiss the case against Scheffler in open court, attesting that Scheffler’s assertion that it was all a misunderstanding “is corrobated by the evidence.” The judge granted the dismissal of the charges.

“The evidence we reviewed supports the conclusion that Detective [Brian] Gillis was concerned for public safety at the scene when he initiated contact with Mr. Scheffler,” O’Connell said, according to ESPN. “However, Mr. Scheffler's actions and the evidence surrounding their exchange during this misunderstanding do not satisfy the elements of any criminal offenses."

O’Connell added that Scheffler can file suit against the police or the city if he chooses. There’s no word at the time of writing this article whether he or his attorneys would pursue civil suits.


Scheffler was on his way to Valhalla Golf Club for the second round of the PGA Championship on May 17 when he encountered stopped traffic due to an accident that killed a pedestrian. He said that an officer told him to drive around the traffic to make it to the clubhouse on time, but Gillis stopped Scheffler, yanked him out of the car, and arrested him.

Gillis didn’t have his bodycam activated at the time — a violation of police procedure — but he claimed that Scheffler sped up as he approached the car, dragging the officer to the ground. Gillis also claimed that he sustained injuries that required medical treatment and that the incident tore the pants he was wearing.

However, footage from multiple cameras at various angles didn’t match up with the story that Gillis told. Police dashcam and pole camera footage don’t show Scheffler dragging Gillis with his car.

Related: New Footage of the Scottie Scheffler Incident Tells a Different Story Than the Police Report

From the day of the incident, Scheffler maintained that the whole incident was a misunderstanding. He stated that he didn’t try to play the “don’t you know who I am” card, even though Gillis claimed that Scheffler “demanded to be let in, and proceeded forward against my directions.”


Louisville Metro Police Chief Jacquelyn Gwinn-Villaroel told the media that Gillis “received ‘corrective action’ for the violation of its rules on uniforms and equipment, which was noted on a performance observation form in line with the department’s disciplinary protocol.”

Scheffler’s attorney Steven Romines maintained that he and his client would fight the charges against him, one of which was a felony. The week after the arrest, Romines told the media, “We’re not interested in settling the case. We will either try it or it will be dismissed. It’s very simple.”


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