Former Federal Prosecutor Arrested After Highway Stabbing Incident


Florida — A former federal prosecutor, previously involved in the early stages of the prosecution of a January 6 defendant, has been taken into custody following a highway altercation in Florida. Patrick Scruggs, 39, was apprehended after allegedly stabbing a driver during a crash incident. New footage has emerged, capturing a confrontation with a Good Samaritan who attempted to intervene.

The incident unfolded on September 26, when Tampa resident Ahmed Gahaf stopped to aid an incapacitated driver on the I-275 southbound. As the driver regained consciousness, he accelerated, colliding with Gahaf's vehicle. In his attempt to maneuver around, he collided with another car, which Scruggs was in.

Scruggs reportedly approached the vehicle that hit him, shattered the driver's side window, and assaulted the driver with a folding knife, resulting in multiple stabs and cuts to the arm, as per the Florida Highway Patrol's arrest report.

Video footage captured by a witness and released by the highway patrol shows Gahaf calling 911 and attempting to stop Scruggs. The video seemingly depicts Scruggs making a swipe at Gahaf with the knife, narrowly missing him.

Scruggs is now facing felony charges of armed burglary, aggravated assault, and aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, according to an arrest affidavit.

In response to the incident, John Nohlgren, Scruggs' attorney, emphasized his client's background as a federal prosecutor and urged the public to "keep an open mind," highlighting Scruggs' lack of prior criminal history.

Gahaf expressed astonishment upon learning that the knife-wielding man he confronted was a former federal prosecutor, stating, "I cannot believe it, you know, that’s what drives me crazy. He knows the law."

Records from the jail indicate that Scruggs was released 10 hours after initial booking at the Pinellas County Jail on a $65,000 bond.

Scruggs, a senior litigation counsel with a decade-long tenure at the Middle District of Florida’s US attorney’s office in Tampa, recently transitioned to a private law firm in Atlanta.

He played a role in the early stages of the prosecution of January 6 defendant Adam Johnson, known as "lectern guy," for his involvement in the removal of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s lectern.

Barnes & Thornburg confirmed that Scruggs is no longer employed at their law firm.