AMES, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) -- The Iowa Department of Transportation released a statement on Thursday confirming Cristhian Rivera, the man accused of killing Mollie Tibbetts, did not have an Iowa driver's license or state-issued identification.
The Iowa DOT issued the statement after reports indicated Rivera used a state-issued identification to gain employment at Yarrbee Farms near Brooklyn.
Officials with the DOT say they reviewed records and confirmed no identification was issued to Cristhian Bahena Rivera "under that name or any alternate name bearing his likeness". They added they also have no license history for him.
They say the review included using facial recognition to compare his photo to all images on record, assuring Rivera didn't get a license or ID under a different or fake name.
DOT officials say they are prohibited from issuing a license or ID to any undocumented immigrant. They are authorized to issue license or ID's to temporary foreign nationals, but they must present documents issued by the United States Customs & Immigration Service and be verified through the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements program.
The Iowa DOT adds that they contribute to the E-verify program, through RIDE (Records and Information from DMVs for E-Verify). The program allows an employer who is shown a driver’s license or ID as proof of identity and employment authorization to enter it into the E-Verify system.
The Iowa DOT did release the following statement regarding the Mollie Tibbetts case - "We stand with the countless others who are saddened by this tragic event and are keeping the friends and family of Mollie Tibbetts in our hearts."