District police investigating the shooting of five children arrested a 14-year-old boy yesterday, and continued to search for a 15-year-old and the weapons used in the attack, authorities said.

The 14-year-old, who was arrested near Second and Elm streets NW, will be held in custody until a court appearance tomorrow morning. Three other suspects arrested early Friday morning, a 16-year-old and two 14-year-olds, are being held on charges of assault with a deadly weapon.

Police said the remaining suspect probably cannot go far because of his age, and may still be in Northwest Washington.

"It just leads you to believe that {he has} a lot of family in the area," one investigator said.

The attack at the corner of Fifth and O streets NW in the city's Shaw section wounded five children, all but one of whom have been released from Children's Hospital. John Olden, 13, who was shot in the abdomen, was listed in fair condition yesterday.

Police said the shooting stemmed from a turf battle between rival groups in Northwest, one based in LeDroit Park, near Second and V streets, and the other in Shaw, around Fifth and O streets. The dispute carried to Shaw Junior High School on 10th Street and Rhode Island Avenue, where members of what police call "loosely knit" groups are enrolled.

The suspect arrested yesterday was on the street when 1st District detectives found him about 6 p.m. in LeDroit Park. The other suspects in custody were sleeping when police knocked on the doors of their homes early Friday morning, one police source said yesterday.

Several of the five suspects have had "prior contact" with police, but this is the first time they have faced serious charges, a source said. Some attend Shaw Junior High, and all have ties to the neighborhood, the source said.

"All of them seem like fairly good kids," said the official. "It looks like they got involved in something over their heads."

At a news conference Friday, Police Chief Isaac Fulwood Jr. said detectives would consider charging the five as adults, but no decision has been announced.

Aside from saying the dispute involved turf rather than drugs, police released scant information on the rival neighborhood groups. But Shaw Junior High students interviewed Friday and yesterday said there are clear factions and persistent trouble.

"All the innocent children are scared because of these little cutthroats," said the mother of a 16-year-old Shaw student who asked that her name and her son's be withheld. "These kids out there are murderers. You have 14-year-old murderers."

Her son, who said he was beaten last year by the members of one group, said the dominant faction in the school is from Shaw. Members on each side have nicknames, and the trouble often begins after school lets out.

"Anybody who isn't from Fifth Street is like a moving target at 3 o'clock," he said.

"Every day he goes to school with fear in his heart," said the mother.

The area in which the shooting occurred is identified with an adult gang that officials say has been involved in several killings, but authorities have not established any link between it and Thursday's shootings. Law enforcement sources earlier this year identified a group of "stick-up" men that called itself the "5 N O Crew," a reference to the neighborhood around Fifth and O streets.