The superintendent of the Prince William County jail, where an inmate accused of slaying 15-year-old Alexander Eugene Sztanko tried to kill himself Sunday, said yesterday that his staff could not have predicted or prevented the man's effort to take his life.

Jail chief Richard G. Kiekbusch said Michael Carl George, 32, of Hartwood, Va., slit his throat with the blade of a jail-issued disposable razor about 5:10 p.m. Sunday, just minutes after a jail employee passed out the razors as part of a grooming routine.

The incident was reported to jail officials by an inmate sharing a cellblock with George, who had become suspicious that George might try to harm himself after seeing him go immediately to his cell and lock himself in seconds after he was issued the razor, Kiekbusch said.

George underwent surgery Sunday night at Prince William Hospital to repair a wound to the left side of his neck.

He was listed in fair condition and was under 24-hour guard yesterday, hospital officials said.

Kiekbusch said George had been interviewed by the jail's mental health therapist, but had displayed no suicidal signs.

He was in protective custody in a cellblock with five other inmates. Kiekbusch refused to say if threats had been made against George by other inmates.

George faces a July 17 court hearing in the slaying of Sztanko, who was shot in the head sometime after he left his family's former home in Woodbridge June 16 to ride his dirt bike. He was also tortured with an electronic stun gun, court records show.

George served 2 1/2 years after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter in the death of 9-year-old Larry Perry, who disappeared in southeast Prince William in May 1979.