‘I bought into a lie’: Realtor who flew to Capitol riot on private jet ‘regrets everything’

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Louise Hall
·3 min read
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<p>Jenna Ryan made headlines last month for her extravagant transportation to the riot on 6 January, 2021</p> (CBS DFW)

Jenna Ryan made headlines last month for her extravagant transportation to the riot on 6 January, 2021

(CBS DFW)

An infamous Texas realtor who took a private jet to the pro-Trump riots on the US Capitol has become the latest person charged in the attack to turn their back on Donald Trump, saying she “regrets everything.”

Jenna Ryan, who made headlines last month for her alleged participation in the riot on 6 January, has admitted that she believes the former president lied to her about the 2020 election being stolen.

In an interview with The Washington Post, Ms Ryan admitted regret for her previous beliefs after being abandoned by people she considered “fellow patriots” saying she feels betrayed.

“I bought into a lie, and the lie is the lie, and it’s embarrassing,” she told The Post. “I regret everything.”

She said that “not one patriot is standing up for me,” and hit out at the portrayal of her following her alleged role in the riot.

“I’m a complete villain. I was down there based on what my president said. ‘Stop the steal.’ Now I see that it was all over nothing. He was just having us down there for an ego boost. I was there for him," she reportedly said.

Following the insurrection on the Capitol, during which five people died, Ms Ryan was charged with knowingly entering or remaining in a restricted building without lawful authority and “disorderly conduct on Capitol grounds”.

In a statement on Twitter on 7 February, Ms Ryan reiterated her insistence that she attended the Capitol to “peacefully protest against election fraud”.

She said she “did not commit violence, but rather, was praising the Name of Jesus at the gates of the powerhouse of the world.”

More than a dozen of Mr Trump's supporters who participated in the attack have since turned on the president, blaming him for directing them to do so.

Following the riots, the realtor initially denied any “shame or guilt” for attending the insurrection because she was “basically following my president. I was following what we were called to do”.

“He asked us to fly there. He asked us to be there. So I was doing what he asked us to do,” she said in an interview with CBS11 in January.

She also told the broadcaster at the time that she "would like a pardon from the president of the United States", adding: "I think that we all deserve a pardon."

More recently, Ms Ryan told The Post that she traveled to Trump’s “Save America” rally on a whim and that a Facebook friend offered to fly her and three others on a private plane.

She is said to have told the newspaper that she fully believed Mr Trump’s false claims that the election was stolen and that he was going to save the country.

According to charging documents released by the FBI, Ms Ryan posted a video to her Facebook account saying: “We’re gonna go down and storm the capitol.”

“They’re down there right now and that’s why we came and so that’s what we are going to do. So wish me luck,” she said, according to authorities.

Investigators also identified the realtor in a video of rioters entering the Capitol chanting: “This is our house!” alongside a tweet showing her smiling and flashing a peace sign next to a broken window at the Capitol.

Later she tweeted: “We just stormed the Capital. It was one of the best days of my life,” according to the authorities. Nine days after the riot, she turned herself into the FBI, The Post said.

The agent has started a fundraising campaign to raise money for her legal defence, which has raised around $700 of its $10,000 goal.

The newspaper reported that despite Ms Ryan's “outward signs of success, [she] had struggled financially for years."

Approximately 100 participants in the violence on Capitol Hill have been arrested and the FBI is sifting through more than 100,000 pieces of digital evidence submitted by the public.

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