(Paul Meltzer (left), private attorney, is shown with Ralph Millar in Superior Court Monday. Millar is suspected of barging into a home in the Seacliff area of Aptos Wednesday and firing off numerous rounds from a gun with two of the rounds striking a female resident of the Santa Cruz Avenue home. Photo by Tarmo Hannula/Pajaronian)

SANTA CRUZ — The Aptos man who allegedly broke into his neighbor’s house and fired about 12 shots into the locked bathroom where she was hiding with another woman made his first court appearance Monday, where he delayed entering a plea.

Ralph Millar will return to court on Sept. 10 for further arraignment.

Millar, 57, faces two counts of attempted murder and one burglary charge. He also faces special allegations of using a firearm during the crime, and for causing great bodily injury. He faces life in prison if convicted.

Investigators say that Millar broke into the victim’s house on the 100 block of Santa Cruz Avenue at about 6 p.m. Wednesday and fired several shots at two women who were inside. He then returned to his residence across the street and refused to come out during a standoff that lasted more than 18 hours.

During the attack, the women locked themselves in a bathroom, one of them hiding in a bathtub to avoid the fusillade.

“One was gravely wounded, and literally by sheer fortune she did not die,” said Santa Cruz County Assistant District Attorney Kristina Oven.

Millar was arrested Thursday at about 12 p.m. when he finally heeded demands by law enforcement officials to come outside.

Outside court, Millar’s attorney Paul Meltzer declined to comment.

The victim, who rode into the courtroom in a wheelchair, also did not speak with the media.

During the short hearing, Santa Cruz County Superior Court Judge Steven Siegel accepted requests by Oven to revoke Millar’s $1 million bail.

Oven cited the “brutal” attack in explaining why she asked for the no-bail hold.

“The actions he took in this case were almost unprecedented, out of a horror movie,” Oven said. “Where the victims are barricaded in their home, they are fearing for their life. What he did is literally shoot through every defense they had in the house, trying to get in and aiming at them.”

Oven said that Millar had 15 firearms, some of which may be illegal, and more than 7,000 rounds of ammunition.

“He literally had a small arsenal in his home, and that to us poses such a danger to the community,” Oven said. “He has shown us that he is willing to use those firearms, and based on that we could not agree on any bail amount.”

The motive for the attack is unclear. Police have said that the dispute between Millar and the victim began in late June.

According to Oven, Millar previously entered the victim’s residence without her permission. On the day of the attack, the victim was reportedly speaking with a Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s deputy.

“We believe he saw that, and became angered, and took action,” Oven said.

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