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Man who crashed car into Amherst fire hall gets five years probation

A North Buffalo man who crashed his car into an Amherst fire hall in August 2011 was placed on probation today for five years.

State Supreme Court Justice John L. Michalski also ordered Mark W. Detlef, 52, to perform 250 hours of community service.

Detlef, who admitted driving his 1999 Buick LeSabre into Main-Transit Fire Station 1 at 6777 Main St., has also signed a confession of judgment for $495,000.

The impact damaged the support structures for the building, glass bay doors, the rescue trucks and a pumper truck, according to the Erie County District Attorney’s Office. Repairs cost more than $500,000.

Michalski ordered Detlef to pay a $250 deductible.

Detlef drove into the fire hall in an apparent suicide attempt just after midnight on Aug. 29, 2011.

He pleaded guilty in January to second-degree criminal mischief.

Detlef had faced a maximum prison sentence of up to seven years. The Probation Department, which prepared the presentencing report, recommended probation. Previously released under supervision, Detlef has been attending mental health counseling, as ordered by the judge.