A D.C. police officer was ordered held without bond yesterday in an armed assault on his girlfriend, authorities said.

Milton Downing, 36, was arrested Sunday at the woman's apartment in the 200 block of 34th Street SE, according to a criminal complaint filed by the U.S. attorney's office.

The woman told police that she and Downing had been dating for several years and were co-leasing the apartment. The woman said Downing had come to her apartment earlier Sunday and had confronted her about a relationship with another man. The two began to fight, shoving and scratching each other, and the woman said she threw a screwdriver at Downing, which missed.

Downing then pointed his service weapon and fired a shot at her, according to the complaint. She was not hit, but she received facial abrasions from gunpowder from the discharge, said Channing D. Phillips, a spokesman for the U.S. attorney's office.

Downing was arrested at the scene and charged with assault with a dangerous weapon. At a preliminary hearing yesterday, D.C. Superior Court Judge Stephen G. Milliken ordered him held without bond and set a trial date for Aug. 20.

Downing is an 11-year member of the police department and is a patrol officer in the 6th District, said Officer Anthony O'Leary, a police spokesman. Downing was placed on paid administrative leave after his arrest and will be dismissed if convicted, O'Leary said.