A 37-year-old District of Columbia police lieutenant, who said he studied nearly a year for the recent promotion test, finished first on the list of eligibles for promotion to captain.

Addison L. Davis, a 15-year veteran finished ahead of 104 men and women who took the test, according to a list of test results released earlier this month.

"I feel good about it . . . I guess everyone in management would like to get to the top . . . right now I'll feel better if I'm made captain," Davis said in an interview this week.

The eligibility list, long awaited by the 2,000 officers who took the test last March, is good for two years, and covers advancement to the ranks of sergeant, lieutenant and captain.

Department officials report competition was extremely tough for a limited number of positions.

Davis said he began studying with two colleagues last July, and in the weeks before the test, was spending most of his weekends and after hours time pouring through police general orders and a management book.

"A lot of other people put as much time into it as I did - it was so close," Davis said.

The test were the subject of some concern shortly after they were administered. Rumours sweeping through the police department alleged that high ranking black police officers leaked test informationin advance to selected blacks to ensure their promotion.

The rumours grew to such intensity that Police Chief Burtell M. Jefferson addressed his troops on videotape to explain police test procedures. These procedures are so rigid, Jefferson said in an interview, that it would be "impossible" for anyone to have had test questions in advance.

Of the officers who finished in the top five on each of the three examinations, 11 were black, according to the promotion list.

Davis said he took a week off to study for the test, and that some of his colleagues took two weeks of vacation to study. The two men he studied with, lieutenants Fred W. Raines and Horatius W. Wilson, finished and fifth, respectively, on the captains test.

Davis has worked in patrol and community relations in Anacostia and headed up recruiting for the department from 1972 to 1974. He was selected to attend a 12 - week law enforcement course at the FBI Academy and subsequently served as a platoon leader and administrative lieutenant in the Fifth District, which includes much of Northeast Washington.

Richard J. Pennington, assigned to recruiting, and John A. Sims, assigned to the First District, finished at the top of the list for promotion to lieutenant and sergeant, respectively