One current and two former Landover Mall security guards were arrested yesterday by Maryland State Police and charged with assault and battery. The arrests came after a three-month investigation of allegations that the guards beat three shoppers at the mall in November.

State police spokesman William Tower said that troopers served arrest warrants yesterday afternoon on David Kevin McCloud, 20, of 13835 Castle Blvd., Silver Spring; Gary F. Byrd, 21, of 3 Cindy La., Capitol Heights, and William Dean Ehresman, 24, of 7810 Locris Ct., Upper Marlboro.

Tower said that only Byrd is still employed as a guard at Landover Mall, which is located just off the Capital Beltway in northern Prince George's County.

Tower said a bond commissioner released all three on their own recognizance yesterday.

None of the men could be reached last evening, and employes at the mall's management office would not comment.

According to state police, the arrests stem from two incidents on Nov. 24.

Eugene Darnell Thompson, 18, and his nephew, John Thompson Jr., 16, were arrested by the security guards that evening. The Thompsons said they were kicked and beaten prior to being charged with trespassing, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

In a separate incident later that evening, Mark Gibrau, of Landover, said he was grabbed and choked in the hallway by one of the guards while shoppers looked on.

In both instances, the men had ignored guards' orders to leave the mall. The incidents prompted a handful of mall shoppers to picket the mall to protest the guards' behavior.

Following the incidents, the Prince George's County Human Relations Commission wrote Secretary of State Lorraine Sheehan, who oversees licensing for private security guards, requesting that she look into the situation.

As a result of that letter, Tower said, Sheehan asked state police to investigate in December. He said that the investigation is continuing, with a possibility of further arrests.