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Woman accused of opening fire at neighbor faces judge

SAN DIEGO -- A Clairemont Mesa woman accused of firing a shot through her neighbors' front door after they complained about loud shouting coming from her apartment pleaded not guilty Tuesday to assault with a semiautomatic firearm and other charges.

Brittany Lefler, 35, was ordered held on $350,000 bail.

Deputy District Attorney Michael Reilly said police responded to an apartment complex in the 6300 block of Beadnell Way after midnight on Dec. 29 and told Lefler to quiet down, then left.

About 5 a.m., Lefler knocked on her neighbors' door and threatened a male resident before firing a shot through the front door, the prosecutor alleged.

Reilly alleged that the defendant also pointed the gun an at 11-year-old girl who lived at the apartment with her mother.

The prosecutor said Lefler then retreated into her apartment, causing a seven-hour SWAT standoff that ended with the defendant's peaceful surrender.

In addition to assault with a firearm, Lefler is charged with shooting into an inhabited dwelling, making criminal threats and felony child abuse. She faces 25 years in prison if convicted.

A bail review was set for Friday, and a readiness conference is scheduled for Jan. 12, followed by a Jan. 17 preliminary hearing.