VIRGINIA

Suspect in Killing Arrested in N.Y.

A Sterling man sought in the slaying of his girlfriend at a Fair Oaks office building was arrested yesterday in Bethel, N.Y., by police who found him passed out on the kitchen floor of a vacation cottage.

Jason A. Morant, 33, of the 21000 block of Goldstone Terrace, is charged with strangling Robin Kehrer, 24, in the stairwell of their office at 3975 Fair Ridge Dr. Kehrer's body was found about 10:30 a.m. Monday, and police began searching for Morant almost immediately. Senior Investigator David Goggin of the New York State Police said that Morant went to New York City, where he has family, and that one relative then accompanied him to the vacation home in Bethel, about 110 miles northwest of the city.

Goggin said Morant's relative called state police about 10:15 a.m. yesterday and told them Morant was highly intoxicated and unconscious and was wanted for murder in Virginia. State police checked with Fairfax County detectives, then arrested Morant about an hour later without incident. Fairfax detectives were traveling to Bethel last night in hopes of interviewing Morant, authorities said.

THE DISTRICT

Two Men Slain in Unrelated Incidents

Two men were slain Wednesday night in apparently unrelated incidents, police said.

A citizen walked into a fire station about 8:55 p.m. and said a man in a park in the 400 block of O Street NW needed help. Police found a man who had been stabbed repeatedly. The man, whose identity was held pending notification of relatives, was pronounced dead at 9:21 p.m. at Howard University Hospital.

At 11:06 p.m., police responding to the 800 block of Yuma Street SE to investigate a report of gunfire found a man who had been shot in the back. The man, who has not been identified, was taken to D.C. General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 11:56 p.m.

MARYLAND

Fugitive Returned to State Hospital

Michael Anthony Lazas, the convicted murderer who had been missing from a Silver Spring group home for 11 days before his capture Tuesday in Tennessee, was returned to the Clifton T. Perkins State Hospital in Jessup yesterday by Montgomery County sheriff's deputies.

Lazas, 32, was taken into custody Tuesday in Lebanon, Tenn., after having been missing from the group home since Oct. 2.

He is expected to face a hearing at Perkins within a week to determine whether the conditions under which he was allowed to leave in June 1998 should be permanently revoked, officials said.

Lazas, a schizophrenic, was found guilty but not criminally responsible in the 1993 smothering of his 23-month-old son. He received two years' probation and an 18-month sentence in 1991 after being convicted of stabbing a man in the ear and neck.

Man Indicted in School Cross-Burning

A federal grand jury has indicted a Bowie man on charges of burning two crosses outside Bowie High School in June 1997.

Brian Swetnam, 22, appeared in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt yesterday, where he was presented with the charges: conspiracy to interfere with federally protected rights, cross-burning with intent to intimidate, and use of a fire in the commission of a felony.

Swetnam and unidentified co-conspirators burned the crosses to intimidate black students, after they learned that a white student had been beaten up by black students, according to the indictment.

Connolly ordered that Swetnam be released to his father's custody pending further court hearings.