A De Luz woman was behind bars Monday on suspicion of attempted murder for allegedly shooting a neighbor during a confrontation over a disputed easement road between their rural properties in the far northern reaches of San Diego County.
Alyce Ann Copeland, 63, was sitting in a chair on the contested right of way in the 42200 block of Tenaja Truck Trail, blocking it, when 65-year-old Thomas Wessels and his wife drove up shortly before 5 p.m. Friday, according to sheriff’s officials.
The couple got out of their car and asked Copeland why she was obstructing the drive, which all three use to get to their homes, the sheriff’s department reported. Following a brief exchange, Copeland allegedly reached into her waistband, pulled out a pistol and shot Wessels in the abdomen.
Despite his wound, Wessels was able to wrest away the weapon and subdue Copeland by hitting her on the head with the butt of the gun, according to a sheriff’s statement. His wife then drove him to a hospital.
Copeland was treated in an emergency room for a minor scalp injury before being booked into the Las Colinas women’s jail in Santee. She was being held without bail pending arraignment Tuesday afternoon.
The protracted disagreement between Copeland and the Wessels over right of way and easements in their yards has led to a civil case that has yet to be resolved in the courts, authorities said.
— City News Service