Hawaii couple charged with stealing identities of 2 dead children in Texas

·3 min read

A couple living in Hawaii are accused in federal court of living under the false identities of two dead infants from Texas since the late 1980s, unsealed court documents say.

Walter Glenn Primose and his wife, Gwynn Darle Morrison, assumed the names Bobby Edward Fort and Julie Lyn Montague — two Texas babies who died in the late 1960s — respectively, and allegedly used those identities to obtain fraudulent Social Security cards, passports and driver's licenses, according to a criminal complaint filed July 21.

Primrose, a former member of the U.S. Armed Services, and Morrison, both in their 60s, were arrested Friday on the island of Oahu, NBC Hawaii affiliate KHNL reported. They were charged with identity theft, making false statements in application and use of a passport, and conspiracy to commit an offense against the U.S., according to the criminal complaint.

Walter Glenn Primose, also known as Bobby Edward Fort, and Gwynn Darle Morrison, also known as Julie Lyn Montague, appearing to wear KGB, the former Russian spy agency, uniforms in photos submitted as evidence by the government. (U.S. State Department)
Walter Glenn Primose, also known as Bobby Edward Fort, and Gwynn Darle Morrison, also known as Julie Lyn Montague, appearing to wear KGB, the former Russian spy agency, uniforms in photos submitted as evidence by the government. (U.S. State Department)

Photos of Primrose and Morrison appearing to wear green uniforms are included in prosecutors' motion to have the couple held without bail. Another motion by prosecutors say the defendants are wearing "what have been identified as KGB uniforms."

The couple have not been charged with any espionage-related crimes, though Morrison's lawyer, Megan Kau, told KHNL, the prosecutors' motion to hold the couple without bail "vaguely accuses my client of being a Russian spy."

Kau added Morrison was "shocked" by the accusations and said her client "has nothing to do with Russia." Kau said the jacket in the photos did not belong to Morrison and Primose.

Morrison "tried on a uniform that was at a friend’s house one time and they took pictures," Kau told KHNL. Kau added the photos appeared to show the couple wearing the same jacket, and that she did not know why the friend possessed the uniform. The KGB was the intelligence agency of the then-Soviet Union.

Photos of Gwynn Darle Morrison, aka Julie Lyn Montague, and Walter Glenn Primose, aka Bobby Edward Fort. (United States District Court District of Hawaii via AP)
Photos of Gwynn Darle Morrison, aka Julie Lyn Montague, and Walter Glenn Primose, aka Bobby Edward Fort. (United States District Court District of Hawaii via AP)

Primrose and Morrison went to the same high school and college, and married in 1980, according to an arrest affidavit. Court records did not indicate why the couple allegedly assumed the names of two dead Texas children — who would have been more than a decade younger than them — in 1987, but the affidavit noted the couple's home was foreclosed the same year.

The couple remarried under the false names in 1988, according to the complaint, and Primrose enlisted in the Coast Guard in 1994 under Fort's name and identity.

Prosecutors noted Primrose "represented himself to be approximately 12 years younger than his true age at the time of Coast Guard enlistment," as the child's name he allegedly assumed was born in 1967. Primrose was born in 1955.

The Hawaii home where U.S. defense contractor Walter Glenn Primrose and his wife, Gwynn Darlle Morrison, lived for years allegedly under aliases. (Caleb Jones / AP)
The Hawaii home where U.S. defense contractor Walter Glenn Primrose and his wife, Gwynn Darlle Morrison, lived for years allegedly under aliases. (Caleb Jones / AP)

Primrose served in the Coast Guard until 2016, and then began working as contractor for the Department of Defense, according to the affidavit. KHNL reports Primrose worked as a contractor until his arrest and was granted a security clearance for the position.

A hearing for a judge to decide if the couple should be held with or without bail is scheduled for Thursday.