A 32-year-old account executive for WMAL radio has been the object of an intensive police search since she failed to report for work last Thursday, and bloodstains subsequently were found on the walls of her locked apartment.

Police are listing the woman, Kathleen Boyden of 3040 Idaho Ave. NW, as a "critical missing person."

In addition to finding blood on the walls of the apartment, investigators found signs of an attempt to scrape off the stains. They said bloodstains also were found in the stairwell leading to the apartment building's basement garage. The woman's car, a 1980 Toyota, sometimes parked in the garge, also is missing.

Police said a neighbor reported hearing screams about 3 a.m. Thursday.

Boyden was last seen Wednesday night by friends whom she visited to watch television. Telephone messages found in her apartment indicate she returned home between 11 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. Wednesday.

After Boyden, known for her reliability, did not appear at work Thursday, a friend with a key entered Boyden's one-bedroom efficiency apartment and then called police. A few items were reported missing from the apartment, but details were not immediately available.

Boyden, a graduate of Smith College where she was president of her graduating class, worked in New York and San Francisco before becoming assistant media coordinator for the U.S. Commission on the International Year of the Child. She joined WMAL in 1979.

Persons with information are invited to call the police homicide branch at 727-4317.