The 25-year-old NSA contractor charged with leaking top secret information to journalists allegedly bragged to family members that she would “play that card” of being “pretty, white and cute,” in calls recorded from the Georgia detention center where she is being held.
In the first court appearance for Reality Winner since being charged under the Espionage Act, prosecutor Jennifer Solari alleged that she was caught talking about her defense to her sister and mother, The Huffington Post reported.
“You know I’m charged with these documents, I’m screwed up,” Winner allegedly told her mother, adding that if she were not released on bond that she would go “nuclear to the press.”
Winner also told her mother to “play up” the angle that she feared for her life and her pets, according to Solari.
In another call to her sister from the federal detention center in Lincolntown, Ga., Winner allegedly said: “I’m going to play that card being pretty, white and cute, braid my hair and cry and all.”
A former Air Force linguist, Winner was working as a contractor for the NSA in Augusta, Georgia, where prosecutors say she removed a classified document from a secure area and sent it to journalists. She was charged shortly after The Intercept published a top secret report from NSA that detailed efforts by Russia to influence the 2016 US election.
Winner has pleaded not guilty to the charges.