Sherman Douglas, a District high school basketball star who went on to lead a professional NBA team in Miami, was subpoenaed yesterday to appear before a federal grand jury in Alexandria that is investigating a prison break from the Lorton Correctional Complex, sources said.

The case stems from the escape last July of two D.C. men, Kelvin Ford and Andre Villogram. Robert R. Ades, one of Douglas's attornies, emphasized that his client "is a witness, that's it. He's not a target. Sherman's never done anything wrong in his life."

Douglas, 25, who was served with the subpoena at his home in Mitchellville, allegedly knew Denise Ford, a sister of one of the escapees, the sources said.

According to the sources, investigators are trying to determine whether prison guards helped the two men escape and to identify anyone who harbored the fugitives before they were recaptured.

Early one morning in August, federal and local agents tracking Kelvin Ford questioned Denise Ford at Douglas's Prince George's County home, the sources said.

The officers also questioned Douglas and conducted a search of the house, according to the sources.

Several days before the search, investigators received a report that Kelvin Ford allegedly was seen riding in a Nissan Pathfinder with Florida license plates, the sources said. A car matching that description later was seen in the driveway of Douglas's home, according to the sources. It could not be learned last night whether Douglas owned such a car.

Douglas could not be reached for comment either through his agent or the Miami Heat, the NBA team where he started as point guard during the past two seasons. Denise Ford could not be reached.

Mark Pray, a spokesman for the Heat, said that the team had heard nothing about the subpoena. Pray added, "I can't imagine him being involved in anything like that because he's a good guy and has good judgment."

Eric Fleisher, Douglas's agent, said he too had heard nothing about the case, but doubted whether his client had anything to do with the escape or had had any contact with the fugitives.

Douglas, who is renegotiating his contract with the Heat and has not played this season, was named 1985 Washington player of the year after leading Spingarn High School to an undefeated season and the area championship. After his senior year at Syracuse University, he was voted a college All-American.

Averaging 18.5 points a game last year, Douglas was chosen by the Miami fans as the team's most valuable player and has been described by his colleagues as the team's guiding force.

Ades also said that although Douglas has enjoyed a successful career, he has not forgotten his roots in the heart of the District, where he grew up.

"He gives his time and money, everything to the police Boys and Girls Club. That's where he started," Ades said. "Every time he's in town, he buys 20 {basketball game} tickets for the kids. He wants to give back to his community."

The incident that set off the federal investigation took place just after 9 p.m. July 21, when Ford, 24, and Villogram, 21, cut through a fence and escaped from Lorton's medium-security facility. An officer in a tower at the Occoquan compound saw the inmates and fired three shotgun blasts at the escapees, but neither man was hit.

Law enforcement officers from Fairfax County, Prince William County and the Virginia State Police conducted an initial search for the men, with no success.

D.C. police, Prince George's police and the U.S. Marshal's Service led the continuing search during the next few days.

Villogram, who was serving a sentence of six to 18 years for armed robbery, was captured July 26 near First Street and Atlantic Avenue SE in the District. Villogram had been riding a motorcycle that was registered to Kelvin Ford and allegedly kept at Denise Ford's residence, according to sources familiar with the case.

Ford, serving six to 23 months on charges of assault with the intent to kill and possession of a firearm, was arrested a week and a half later, on Aug. 6. Working on a tip, police traced Ford to a motel in Largo, where he was found with a woman who was questioned and released.

Villogram and Ford were returned to Lorton and face possible escape charges.

Staff writer Avis Thomas-Lester contributed to this report.