Charles Lewis, one of the government's main witnesses in its criminal case against D.C. Mayor Marion Barry, has sold his story to a syndicated television program for $12,000.

In a taped interview broadcast yesterday on WRC-TV (Channel 4), Lewis described for an interviewer from the program "Inside Edition" the events that formed the basis for several of the drug possession and perjury charges against Barry.

Lewis provided no new facts in the interview, conducted at scenic points on Lewis's native St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands.

Barry was convicted of one count of possession of cocaine and acquitted of a second in a nine-week trial that ended Aug. 10. The jury deadlocked on the remaining 12 counts, including all of the charges based on Lewis's testimony. In interviews after the trial, several jurors said they could not send Barry to jail based on the testimony of Lewis, a convicted drug dealer.

Of his alleged drug use with Barry, Lewis said, "We did it mostly in the bathroom, and most of the time he {Barry} was sitting on top of the toilet." When Barry was high, Lewis said, the mayor was "very quiet."

"He didn't corrupt me and I didn't corrupt him. We met each other when we were fully corrupted . . . . Drugs have a way of reaching to everybody. He's a human being first and the mayor second," Lewis said.

Asked why he sold his story to television, Lewis said, "Economic need, and an opportunity to put my side to the public directly."

He added a bit of advice for Barry, saying, "Get your act together."

"Inside Edition" is distributed by King World, which also syndicates "Wheel of Fortune" and paid $125,000 for Jesse L. Jackson's trip last month to interview Iraqi President Saddam Hussein.