VIRGINIA

Police Seek Mother of Abandoned Infant Herndon police yesterday continued to search for the mother of a newborn boy who was found Friday evening in a car outside a McDonald's restaurant.

Police said a customer went into the Elden Street restaurant about 7 p.m. and returned about 10 minutes later to find the baby, wrapped in a sheet, on the front passenger seat of his car. The man took the infant to Reston Hospital Center, where he was in good condition.

The baby, who is Hispanic or black, was about a day old when he was left in the car, police said.

Herndon police Sgt. Mike Williams said several people have called police to inquire about adopting the child.

Chamber Touts N.Va. for Security Agency The Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce has written the Bush administration to urge that it put the new Department of Homeland Security headquarters in Northern Virginia.

In the letter, chamber Chairman Michael J. Lewis cited Northern Virginia's skilled workforce, its many technology and government contracting firms and the area's proximity to other federal facilities focused on defense and security issues.

"In our estimation, a headquarter location in Northern Virginia will offer the Department of Homeland Security numerous advantages that will strengthen the department's core functions and empower it to meet the rapidly evolving forces that menace our nation," Lewis wrote.

Virginia, Maryland and the District are competing to become the home of the new department. The administration has until Jan. 24 to announce the organization and location of the department.

MARYLAND

Ill Driver Blamed in Rush-Hour Crashes A motorist suffering from a diabetic problem struck at least two vehicles on the Capital Beltway and Interstate 270 in Montgomery County, while weaving in and out of rush-hour traffic for about 15 minutes yesterday evening, Maryland State Police said.

They said "dozens of calls" were received from motorists who spotted the vehicle before it pulled onto the shoulder at Tuckerman Lane about 6 p.m. There were no immediate reports of injuries. The driver, a Rockville man, was found semiconscious and was taken to Suburban Hospital.

Body Found at District Heights Carwash A man was found fatally shot last night behind a self-service carwash in District Heights, Prince George's County police said.

A passerby found the man about 6:45 p.m. in the 3400 block of Branch Avenue, said Cpl. Robert Clark, a police spokesman.

A Mission of Love for Pr. George's Needy Christmas came two days early for several hundred low-income Prince George's County residents who were treated to gifts of toys, turkeys and kindness courtesy of Mission of Love, a 12-year-old county-based group that helps provide food, clothing, housing and emergency financial assistance to families in need.

The event took place at a Capitol Heights warehouse where Mission of Love members and area business leaders handed out presents and good wishes to mothers who have found jobs and are working to get off welfare and to others who are struggling to make ends meet.

Carla Johnson, a single mother of two, was appreciative of the gifts. "This is a real blessing," she said.

Baltimore's No. 2 Police Official Elevated John McEntee was named Baltimore's acting police commissioner yesterday, replacing Edward Norris, who was selected last week by Gov.-elect Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) to head the state police force.

McEntee, 48, was the deputy police commissioner under Norris, who had been handpicked by Mayor Martin O'Malley (D) to implement the zero-tolerance crime strategy the mayor used to win office. A 30-year veteran of the department, McEntee was born and raised in Baltimore.

THE DISTRICT

Canal Rd. Open -- for Now -- After Rupture Georgetown motorists are expected to get a temporary reprieve from the snarled traffic caused by a ruptured water main because city workers sealed off the broken pipe yesterday, allowing all lanes of Canal Road NW to remain open this week.

But Friday or Saturday, all lanes are expected to close as D.C. Water and Sewer Authority workers replace a 15-foot section of the pipe, said Libby Lawson, spokeswoman for the water authority. She said the agency hopes the major artery will reopen by Monday.

Residents are not expected to be short of water while the main along Canal Road, between Foxhall Road and the Key Bridge, is sealed off, Lawson said.

Traffic will be rerouted while repairs of the 140-year-old pipe are underway, said Bill Rice, spokesman for the D.C. Department of Transportation.

The disruption started Saturday evening when 300 feet of Canal Road west of the Key Bridge was submerged by up to three feet of water from the rupture of a 30-inch-diameter water main, one of the largest in the city's water system.

Man Shot in SE Apartment Building Dies A 19-year-old Southeast Washington man was found fatally shot late Saturday in the apartment house where he lived, D.C. police said.

They said Nathaniel D. Jones was found in a hallway of the building about 11:45 p.m. and pronounced dead at Prince George's Hospital Center about an hour later.

In another development, a man shot to death in Anacostia on Sunday was identified by D.C. police yesterday as Franklin D. Davis, 29, of the 3400 block of A Street SE.

Police said they were called about 4:30 p.m. to an apartment house parking lot in the 1500 block of Butler Street SE. Davis, who had been shot in the head and body, was taken to George Washington University Hospital and pronounced dead about 5:15 p.m.

Road Crews Take Break in Holiday Week Construction work will be suspended on more than 40 stretches of D.C streets, starting at noon today, to give motorists a break for the holiday. The road work will resume Friday, D.C. officials said.

Bill Rice, spokesman for the D.C. Department of Transportation, said work again will be suspended from noon Dec. 31 to Jan. 3. "We want people to be able to use the roads without the disruption of construction activity," Rice said.

"I'm not married. I've got no children. I have nothing to leave behind, so this is what my life is devoted to. This is what I can do to help people."

-- Mike Gillespie, food resources director of the Capital Area Food Bank, which faces growing demand and dwindling contributions. -- Page B1

Compiled from reports by staff writers Petula Dvorak, Maria Glod, Hamil R. Harris, Arthur Santana and Martin Weil and the Associated Press.