A 35-year-old woman was severely beaten and apparently choked at her home in the Foxhall area of Northwest Washington yesterday by a man who had knocked on her door and asked directions, D.C. police reported.

They said a 29-year-old Southeast man was arrested in connection with the incident.

Sharon Breed of 4428 Edmunds St. NW was treated at Georgetown University Hospital for numerous cuts and bruises suffered in the incident, which police said occurred about 11:30 a.m.

Breed told a reporter last night that when she answered the knock at the door, she was confronted by a man who said he was a student and that "he didn't know how to get back to Wisconsin Avenue. He seemed so genuine."

She said she locked the front door and went to locate the address in a telephone book.

When she returned and opened the door slightly, she said, the man forced his way into the house and struck her several times, knocking her unconscious.

Breed said that when she woke up a short time later, there was a rope around her neck and bruises on her throat, and she discovered that the house had been ransacked.

She telephoned police immediately, and a few minutes later two police officers in a patrol wagon nearby were approached by man who asked for directions, police officials said.

The man, who resembled Breed's description of her attacker, was detained by the officers and later placed under arrest.

Police said they charged Mitchell Moore, 29, of 2711 Robinson Place SE, with assault with intent to kill in the incident.

Investigators said a number of items were stolen from the home, including several rings, Breed's wallet and her credit cards.

Some of the items were later recovered, they said.