A 64-year-old Northwest Washington woman who was locked in a closet of her home for more than a day after being beaten by burglers was freed last night by neighbors who heard muffled noises coming from inside the house.

Elizabeth Poch, of 3211 Morrison St. NW, was taken to Georgetown University Hospital where she was undergoing treatment last night, according to police and neighbors.

Poch reportedly came upon the burglars Thursday morning when she reentered her home near Nebraska Avenue in the Chevy Chase section of upper Northwest after working outdoors on her lawn.

At least one of the two intruders reportedly had a handgun. When Poch attempted to flee, he threatened to shoot her. She was struck repeatedly on the head and arms, then locked in the closet of an upstairs bedroom.

A neighbor said that Poch's purse was emptied and the bedroom had been ransacked.

Poch, a retired secretary, was found about 7 p.m. yesterday after a neighborhood youth noticed her newspaper was still on her doorstep, saw that a side door was ajar and heard sounds coming from inside.

He summoned another neighbor and they entered the house and opened the closet with the key left in the locked door.

Apparently dazed and not immediately aware that her ordeal was over, Poch reportedly greeted her rescuers by saying: "Please don't beat me any more . . . "