Scottie Scheffler says he still bears mental scars of his arrest and mugshots

Scottie Scheffler -  Scheffler says he still bears mental scars of his arrest and mugshots
Scottie Scheffler doesn't like talking about the arrest that took place during last month's USPGA Championship - AP/LM Otero

Scottie Scheffler says he is still suffering the mental effects from his arrest at last month’s USPGA Championship and fears he will find it difficult ever to escape the image of that police mugshot of him in an orange outfit for those arrested.

The world No.1 saw the four changes against him – including the prisonable offence of assaulting a police officer – dropped last week with the Louisville authorities admitting that Scheffler had not broken any laws after being accused of “dragging” a police officer in the midst of traffic chaos before the Friday morning of the season’s second major.

But as relieved as Scheffler was by the case being thrown out, he claims to still be feeling the mental hangover of the incident that featured him being handcuffed and put into a cell for an hour before returning to the course to shoot a remarkable 66.

However, he slumped to a 73 the next day – citing the “delayed reaction” to the drama – and despite a final-round 65 he could manage only a tie for eighth in his attempt to win the first two majors on the year.

Even now, Scheffler is not over it.

“I definitely haven’t moved past it,” he said on Tuesday at the Memorial tournament. “I would say that I still haven’t a 100 per cent moved past it . Yeah, the charges are dropped, but it’s now almost more appropriate for people to ask me about it a and to be honest with you, it’s not something that I love reliving, just because it was fairly traumatic for me being arrested going into the golf course.

“And so it’s not something that I love talking about… It was definitely a bit of a relief [ the charges being dropped], but not total relief because that’s something that will always stick with me. That mugshot – I’m sure it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.”

Mugshot of Scottie Scheffler
The mugshot that Scheffler, understandably, would prefer wasn't in public circulation - AP

Scheffler could have sued the Louisville Police Department, but chose not to because of his belief that the Kentucky city’s taxpayers would have been forced to foot the bill. However, had the charges not been withdrawn, he figures he would have little choice.

“For me personally, no,” he said, when asked if he and his lawyers had considered seeking reparation that obviously would have stretched in the million. “That was something that if we needed to use it, I think Steve [Romines, his attorney] was more than ready to use.

“There was a ton of evidence in our favour. There were eyewitnesses on the scene that corroborated my story and the video evidence… All the evidence pointed to exactly what my side of the story was, and so if we needed to. Well, I don’t really know how to describe it, but basically, if I had to show up in court, I think Steve was more than prepared to pursue legal action.

“But at the end of the day, I did not want to have to because the people of Louisville were to have to pay for the mistakes of their police department. And that just doesn’t seem right.”

Despite the trauma, Scheffler is the overwhelming favourite to prevail this week at the $20 million PGA Tour event in Columbus, Ohio. He also heads the betting market – at odds of just 4-1 – for next week’s US Open at Pinehurst.

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