Tiger Woods: Meds, not alcohol, led to DUI arrest

Players arriving for a tournament this week at Muirfield Village might notice a framed picture of Tiger Woods with a resplendent smile and bright red shirt. He’s posed there with the trophy, an image that embodies the excitement he once brought to golf.

A far different photo emerged Monday, this one from the Palm Beach County jail in Florida after Woods was arrested on a DUI charge.

Sullen, lifeless eyes.

Thinning hair mussed at the top. Scraggly facial hair. A white T-shirt.

In another stunning development for a player who became one of the dominant figures in sports, Woods was arrested on suspicion of DUI and spent nearly four hours in jail before he was released on his own recognizance.

Woods said an “unexpected reaction” to prescription medicine — not alcohol — was the reason for his arrest. He said he understands the severity of the incident and takes full responsibility.

“I want the public to know that alcohol was not involved,” he said. “What happened was an unexpected reaction to prescribed medications. I didn’t realize the mix of medications had affected me so strongly.”

Woods said he wanted to apologize to his family, friends and fans, adding that “I expect more from myself, too.”

“I will do everything in my power to ensure this never happens again,” he said.

Jupiter Police spokeswoman Kristin Rightler said an arrest report may be available today.

Woods, a 14-time major champion who ranks No. 2 in PGA Tour history with 79 victories, has not played golf for four months. He had a fourth back surgery on April 20, and just five days ago reported on his website that the fusion surgery brought instant relief from pain and that he “hasn’t felt better in years.”

Rightler said Woods was arrested about 3 a.m. Monday on Military Trail, a six-lane road south of Indian Creek Parkway. He was about 20 minutes from his home on Jupiter Island. His statement did not indicate where he was going at that hour or where he had been.

Woods’ agent at Excel Sports, Mark Steinberg, did not respond to a voicemail from The Associated Press seeking comment. PGA Tour spokesman Ty Votaw said the tour would have no comment.

Players arriving at Muirfield Village in Dublin, Ohio, for the Memorial did not want to comment, either.

Within an hour of the news, they all had seen the photo.

Woods has not been seen at a golf tournament since he opened with a 77 at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic in February, withdrawing the next day because of back spasms.