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NFL Impersonator Arrested

A 36-year-old Nebraska man who posed as NFL players to receive free hotel rooms, meals and limousine rides has been arrested after he tried his scheme one more time in Las Vegas.

Willis Clyde Thomas was charged Tuesday with two counts of burglary and two counts of defrauding an innkeeper.

Police said Thomas had been posing as Chad Fann, a San Francisco 49er tight end, and had received complimentary hotel rooms, meals and limousine rides from various Las Vegas hotels and businesses.

Thomas had been the subject of a five-month fraud investigation conducted by NFL security officials, who enlisted police help in catching the impostor.

The NFL suspects Thomas of also using Fann's name in Reno, Sparks, Lake Tahoe and several other states for the past 1½ years, police said.

Thomas was arrested Tuesday after he obtained a complimentary room at the Fremont Hotel by posing as Jamain Stephens, a 6-foot-6, 336-pound member of the Cincinnati Bengals.

Thomas is 6-foot-7 and weighs 305 pounds. Fann is 6-foot-3, 252 pounds.

"Thomas is huge," police Sgt. Sam Hilliard said. "He's a mountain of a man. One of the things that he does when he gets these comps is he always exerts some attitude, like he really is a pro football player and deserves special treatment."

Hilliard said Fann has said he wants to prosecute Thomas.

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