Detectives Jeff Green and Rocco Cianciotti of the MPD'S homicide branch paced around behind the main desk of the Second District Police Headquarters, clearly out of sync with the station's librar-like silence.

"You know what the mankey said when the train ran over his tail," cracked Green. "It won't be long now."

It was only 12:15 p.m. Up on Idaho Avenue, the Fourth of July action still seemed far away.

Officer D.G. Forster, blond and 30-ish, leaned back in his desk chair, dragging occasionally on a Pall Mall. He fielded a wrong number. He answered a telephone request for information -- "Yes, ma'am, we're open 24 hours a day."

On the other side of the main desk, a Beltsville electronic parts retailer talked about gas in Richmond -- They're beggin' for customers down there" -- as he waited for a lieutenant to come and sign his exemption form from odd-even rationing.

"It's worse than a Sunday in here today," Forster said. "Nothing' goin' on. We'll probably have a lot later tonight. Probably a lot of kids separated from their parents.

Green and Cianciotti prepared to leave, their look into the heart attack death of a woman completed. Did Green expect to run across any sloshed senators on the evening of the Fourth? "I'm sure they're out there, but you won't hear anything about it."

By midafternoon, things began to pick up. So did the police.

A young woman who had been demonstrating with the Yippies decided to scale the White House fence on the north side across from Lafayette Park. As Detective Jim Boyle of the Secret Service put it, agents "responded" to her. She tried to get back over the fence but they caught her and charged her with "unlawful entry." Within an hour or so, she was being questioned at the Second District.

"I'll tell ya that she's keeping five officers from doing their work," said Officer J.D. Schaub. "I'm supposed to transport her to the cellblock but she has to be fingerprinted and you con't do it when she has her fist clenched. She seems out of it."

"We're calling her Jane Doe," said Officer R.M. Clay. "All other information has been refused."

By late afternoon, Lt. C.J. Wilson, the officer in charge of the Second District, was still hoping Jane Doe could be cajoled into giving her fingerprints voluntarily. "I'm authorized to get her fingerprints," Wilson remarked, leaving little doubt that he was referring to forcible persuasion, "but I don't like to do that.

A few moments later, "Jane Doe" could be seen in the back of he station being led from one room to another by a female officer. She looked about 40, and had on a bright red blouse, and a necklace. Her hair was short, her finger a bit stout. She didn't look like a Yippie.

Forty-year-old Arthur Clifford Bennett came in on a charge of "false pretenses." According to one of the officers, he had allegedly stayed at the Holiday Inn on Connecticut Avenue from June 28 to July 4, but had no money to pay his bill.

A tall gaunt man, wearing dark aviator glasses and a blue-collard sport shirt, Bennett, of Ft. Worth, Tex., stood by the telephone, making his permitted phone call.

"I'd like to talk to Senator Kennedy," he was overheard saying. "They're trying to lock me up. No sir, I haven't done anything wrong."

After about five minutes, during wich Bennett appeared to be contemplating other calls, Officer D.E. Dennie went over to him.

"You can't stand here indefinitely," he barked at Bennett. "I am calling for the transport to take you to the cellblock. You have approximately 10 minutes."

A few minutes later, another officer led Bennett away as he said something about a drink of water.

" Independence Day, let me tell you," said the officer. CAPTION: Pictures 1, 2 and 3, Three faces on the Fourth: from left, Linda Bezich, Gustavo Jimenez, Kenji Jasper; by Gerald Martineau, Lucian Perkins, Joel Richardson -- The Washington Post