For 2 Decades, Airport Worker Used Murder Victim’s ID, Officials Say

On a July morning in 1992, a man named Jerry Thomas was shot to death in front of the Y.M.C.A. on Parsons Boulevard in Jamaica, Queens. According to the Queen’s district attorney’s office, no one was arrested for his murder.

Almost 20 years later, a security supervisor at Newark Liberty International Airport was arrested on Monday at his home in Elizabeth, N.J., and charged with stealing Mr. Thomas’s identity.

Bimbo Olumuyiwa Oyewole, a 54-year-old illegal immigrant from Nigeria, had been using a birth certificate, Social Security card and other documents indicating that he was Mr. Thomas, said the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

In a real-life case reminiscent of Dick-Whitman-as-Don-Draper of “Mad Men,” Mr. Oyewole worked at the airport for various private security companies for almost 20 years under the name Jerry Thomas, the Port Authority said. He had passed multiple background checks, the agency said.

It was not clear how Mr. Oyewole obtained Mr. Thomas’s documents, the authorities said.

An investigation into Mr. Oyewole’s true identity was initiated after the Port Authority’s inspector general received an anonymous tip, a Port Authority spokesman, Steve Coleman, said.

Mr. Oyewole was being held in Essex County Jail on Monday afternoon, awaiting his arraignment, Mr. Coleman said.

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