Man leads police on chase through Cortland, Cayuga counties

Michael A. Buchalla (Photo: Cortland County Sheriff's Office)

CORTLAND, N.Y. — A Cayuga County man led police on a chase through two New York counties Sunday night that ended at his residence on Lake Como Road, the Cortland County Sheriff's Office announced Monday.

The chase began shortly before 9:30 p.m. Sunday when officers in Cayuga County attempted to locate a vehicle being driven by Michael A. Buchalla, 31, of the town of Summer Hill. Buchalla was wanted in connection with a disturbance that occurred earlier that evening at his home on Lake Como Road in Summer Hill.

Officers located Buchalla in a GMC Envoy traveling north on Route 13 in Cortlandville. When officers turned on their sirens, Buchalla fled, leading police on a short chase through the towns of Cortlandville and Homer before being taken into custody without incident at his home on Lake Como Road, authorities said.

At one point during the chase, officers deployed "stop sticks" — a tire-deflation device used in high speed pursuits — to slow Buchalla's speed.

Buchalla faces a multitude of misdemeanor charges and vehicle and traffic violations, including reckless driving, unlawfully fleeing a police officer, and failure to comply with a police officer.

He was taken to Cortland County Jail on $500 cash bail and is scheduled to appear in Cortlandville Town Court on May 8.