The emu then crossed the road to a neighboring home where resident MacLean Lunko was doing yard work.
Willders told the York Daily Record the emu followed Lunko "like a dog" as he walked around the yard.
"I was a bit nervous. I didn't want to startle the thing. I didn't feel threatened by it. But I didn't want to make any sudden movements," Lunko said.
Northern York County Regional Police arrived and summoned a woman who is known to keep emus on her property nearby, but she determined all of her birds were accounted for.
Willders, the police officer and the woman were able to wrangle the bird into the back of her pickup truck to be taken to her farm for safekeeping, but the bird wrestled itself loose and took off running.
"The daggone thing was strong. It was quite powerful," Willders said.
Police said there have not been any reports of a missing emu in the area. Neighbors said they suspect a former resident may have abandoned the animal when they moved away about a year ago.
Emus are primarily native to Australia, but they are also found in Indonesia, New Guinea, the Solomon Islands and the Philippines. The birds can grow to be over 6 feet tall and can sprint up to 30 mph.