Serious flaws in the D.C. police department's drug screening progam similar to those alleged recently by two whistleblowers were uncovered by the Internal Affairs Division more than two years ago, according to documents obtained by The Washington Post.

It was unclear what measures were taken after the June 5, 1985, report by the division. The internal review identified problems of missing and altered documents, breaches of security and shoddy record-keeping. In particular, the report noted that urine samples and test equipment were left unattended during testing and that drug-screening records were discovered to be missing from confidential files, then were returned, altered, to the files.

Some of the same issues were raised by whistleblowers Vernon Richardson and Marguerite Anastasi, drug clinic workers who brought their concerns to the U.S. attorney's office and the mayor's office this summer.

Among their allegations was the claim that a police lieutenant and a sergeant in internal affairs tampered with drug test results on behalf of a lieutenant up for promotion, an incident that allegedly occurred six days before the critical report was written, but went unmentioned in it.

"The Internal Affairs Division had people involved in the {May 30, 1985} incident, yet there's not a whisper of that problem in the report filed in June {1985}, which leads one to question the credibility of the Internal Affairs Division and that report," said Gary Hankins, labor committee chairman of the Fraternal Order of Police.

The report was addressed to Police Chief Maurice T. Turner Jr. and was routed through to two assistant chiefs. It was unclear yesterday whether Turner had received it.

Turner said last night that he could not recall the internal affairs report in question and said, "I'd have to review it" before commenting. Internal affairs "generates a lot of reports and when there are shortcomings, we try to make adjustments to straighten them out," Turner said.

He said he was "not familiar with any reports generated by Anastasi or Richardson."

Richardson and Anastasi, in letters sent this summer to U.S. Attorney Joseph E. diGenova and Mayor Marion Barry, detailed an alleged scenario of security breaches at the screening clinic and cited missing records from locked and confidential clinic files.

The 1985 report, the product of a 15-month investigation and written by Deputy Chief Jimmy L. Wilson, then the unit's commander, also cited missing records as a problem. In one instance mentioned in the report, incomplete records of the handling of urine samples were taken from files, then completed and backdated over one weekend and returned to the files.

The report stated that on Friday, Jan. 25, 1985, internal affairs investigators examining clinic files "noticed several chain-of-custody transmittals had not been completed for a period dating back nine months earlier."

"When they returned on Monday morning they checked the same records that they noted as incomplete on Friday only to find that the records had been completed, signed and backdated," the report noted.

Drug screening tests are required of new police officers, officers up for promotions and officers accused of substance abuse, an offense that results in dismissal. The tests are also a routine part of yearly physicals given to officers 35 years old and older.

Among other problems noted in the 1985 review were:Incomplete chain-of-custody transmittals, key documents that are important in court or administrative procedures to discipline or convict officers of illegal drug use. Security breaches and lack of confidentiality of information gathered at the clinic, including uncertainty over which urine sample belonged to which officer, and failure to maintain anonymity of those submitting urine samples and those who tested positive. Sloppy security procedures including poor control of keys to the drug screening room, unauthorized traffic through the room while tests were conducted and urine samples and test equipment left unattended.

Meanwhile, 13 internal memos authored by Richardson and obtained by The Post suggest that, despite the June 1985 internal affairs report, substantial problems may still remain with the department's drug screening program.

The memos -- the first dated March 8, 1987 and the last dated July 21, 1987 -- were sent by Richardson to his supervisor, Anastasi, or to Lt. Michael Irish, an official at the Police and Fire Clinic at 2 D.C. Village La. SW, where the drug testing program is housed.

In addition to documenting alleged irregularities and other procedural problems, the memos seemed to spark what became a labor-management dispute between Richardson and Anastasi and their superiors. Both were "summarily relieved" of their duties on Wednesday but, following inquiries to the department from reporters last week, were reinstated yesterday.

Among the problems cited in the memos are: Lack of security. In a June 26 report to Anastasi, Richardson said he was aware of "several instances in which evidence" suggested that unauthorized persons had entered secure rooms where urine samples were stored. The memo also stated that some of the urine testing equipment may have been "tampered with."

Other memos state that, on occasions, urine samples had been left in unsecured places, file drawers had been left unlocked, and secured rooms apparently had been entered by a person or persons who failed to note their entry in a log book, as required. Missing and altered documents. According to a June 1 memo by Richardson, files containing drug screening records for seven days in May 1987 disappeared, then were subsequently found in a place that already had been searched.

Another memo, dated March 30, described an incident in which a document had been backdated. Procedural irregularities. Two documents, dated March 8 and April 4, cite instances in which urine samples were left unsecured or unrefrigerated, which could potentially alter the final test results indicating whether there were traces of drugs found in the samples.

According to the April 4 memo, Richardson said that similar violations of procedures and policies had been "deliberately ignored, overlooked and altered." Identification of officers giving samples. According to a May 20 memo, Richardson said that it had been ordered that "drug screening operators would be required to actually witness and collect urine samples from persons giving same for drug abuse testing . . . in direct conflict with our sworn testimony at trial boards that we as operators are not allowed to know the identity of the person submitting a urine sample."

The memo states that another officer then began to take samples from people whose identity was known to him.