Capitol rioter Jenna Ryan says remorse is a "thought crime" ahead of prison sentence

"I have a problem with remorse because it’s like a thought crime," she said during a local TV interview

Published November 12, 2021 6:08PM (EST)

Jenna Ryan, of Frisco, Texas, amid a crowd of rioters entering the U.S. Capitol Building on Jan. 6, 2021.
 (Department of Justice)
Jenna Ryan, of Frisco, Texas, amid a crowd of rioters entering the U.S. Capitol Building on Jan. 6, 2021. (Department of Justice)

Convicted Capitol rioter Jenna Ryan — the Texas realtor who flew to the attempted Jan. 6 insurrection on a private jet and later said she wouldn't be sent to jail because of her "blonde" hair and "white skin" — is hard at work preparing for her stay in prison, she told local reporters at WFAA-TV in Dallas during an extended sit-down interview this week.

How? By watching YouTube videos.

"I'm watching all the YouTube videos on how prison is, how to go to prison, what to do." Ryan said. 

When asked about whether or not she was sorry for breaking into the U.S. Capitol as part of an attempt to stop the lawful certification of a presidential election, she appeared to shift blame to the Capitol police officers who failed to stop her and the other rioters from entering the building.

Want a daily wrap-up of all the news and commentary Salon has to offer? Subscribe to our morning newsletter, Crash Course.

"I wish that (door) had not been open," Ryan said, "but a police officer was standing next to me. "It was kind of like a Walmart greeter."

She later doubled down and attempted to distance herself from past statements of contrition — even going so far as to call remorse a "thought crime." 

"I'm not one to go hide — and as far as remorse, I have a problem with remorse because it's like a thought crime," Ryan said.  Earlier this month, Ryan said she was "remorseful" for entering the Capitol in another interview. 

RELATED: "I'm a big-time victim": Jan. 6 rioter whines after flying to insurrection on private jet

During the wild sit-down, Ryan also tried to rewrite history, telling reporters the riot was "peaceful" and that coverage of the events that day had distorted the truth.  

It was a claim immediately refuted by WFAA's sister outlet in D.C. — "WUSA9 can verify that statement is false," a disclaimer in the online story reads.

Protestors injured as many as 150 police officers on Jan. 6 — with some still hospitalized to this day. To boot, Ryan was photographed beside other protestors destroying camera equipment owned by the Associated Press. 

RELATED: Jan. 6 rioter given jail sentence — after bragging she'd skate because of her skin color

Ryan has already pleaded guilty to entering the Capitol for roughly two minutes on Jan. 6, where she tweeted a photo of herself beside a smashed in window with the caption: "If the news doesn't stop lying about us we're going to come after their studios next." 

Immediately following her conviction, Ryan posted a video to Twitter of an American flag. 

She is expected to begin her 60-day sentence in January.

By Trish Rooney

Trish Rooney is an Editorial Intern with Salon and a graduate journalism student at New York University. Follow her on Twitter @trishroooney.

MORE FROM Trish Rooney

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Capitol Riot Clip Crime Dallas Insurrection Jail January 6 Jenna Ryan Prison Private Jet Realtor Remorse Texas