An Air Force veteran was charged on Monday with sending classified information to a news outlet, according to the Department of Justice.

Reality Leigh Winner, a federal contractor with Pluribus International Corporation, allegedly printed a classified intelligence document about national defense information from the National Security Agency on May 9, according to the DOJ news release. She then allegedly mailed the document to the Intercept.

According to the Intercept, the top-secret document detailed how Russia executed a cyberattack on at least one U.S. voting software supplier. The document also showed that Russian military intelligence sent spear-phishing emails to more than 100 local election officials days before the presidential election — spear-phishing emails are sent from what appears to be a known or trusted sender to persuade the recipient to reveal confidential information. 

The Federal Bureau of Investigation arrested Winner at her home in Georgia on Saturday.

The 25-year-old served in the Air Force from December 2010 to December 2016 as a cryptologic language analyst, the Air Force told Air Force Times via email.

Winner's most recent assignment was with the 94th Intelligence Squadron at Fort Meade in Maryland. The former senior airman had received the Air Force Commendation Medal, which is given to airmen for meritorious achievement and service.

She has no deployments on record, according to the Air Force.

USA Today reported that Winner, who joined the Air Force after graduating from H.M. King High School in Kingsville, Texas, speaks multiple languages, including Pashto and Farsi.

Charlsy Panzino covers the Guard and Reserve, training, technology, operations and features for Army Times and Air Force Times. Email her at  

Charlsy is a Reporter and Engagement Manager for Military Times. Email her at

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