The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City cast is moving on without Jen Shah.
On Tuesday’s episode of Two Ts In A Pod with Teddi Mellencamp and Tamra Judge, guest co-host Whitney Rose opened up about filming while Shah is serving a five-year prison sentence for her role in a long-running telemarketing scheme.
“I will say that season 4 kind of goes back to the original OG Salt Lake City roots,” Rose, 36, explained. “It very much is like season one in that the fights are lighter. They’re just as dramatic but we’re not fighting over you know…,”
Tamra Judge added, “someone who’s going to prison.”
Rose admitted that “having Jen gone is like a breath of fresh air,” adding, “Honestly, it was so much easier.”
“I think it just felt weird not having her because she’s been an OG,” she explained. “We built the show with her. But I don’t think we missed her in the sense of toxicity — like we were able to all bond in a different way and get to know each other on a deeper level and that was nice. And I don’t know if that’s Jen or if it’s just season four, the dynamics of it.”
Despite the change of pace, Judge, 55, noted that Shah, 49, was “a good character on the show” and “entertaining” for audiences.
“She brought it for sure,” Rose responded. “And I think a lot of people are nervous about not having Jen but we brought it. It’s still everything.”
Rose also revealed that new Housewife Monica Garcia has an unique tie to Shah after being asked if she knew her prior to filming.
“I will say I’ve never met her, but I’ve heard a lot about her,” she responded. “She was formerly friends and assistant to Jen Shah.”
She continued: “So I had heard about her because she worked for Jen and her name is brought up a lot on the streets.”
Shah reported to Bryan Federal Prison Camp (FPC) in February to begin her 78-month (6.5-year) sentence for her role in a long-running telemarketing fraud scheme. Her sentence was reduced by one year in March and she is now scheduled to be released on Aug. 30, 2028, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons’ inmate database.
Shah entered a guilty plea last July after she was arrested back in March 2021, along with her assistant Stuart Smith, for their roles in a long-running nationwide telemarketing scheme.
They both originally pled not guilty after they were charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud in connection with telemarketing and conspiracy to commit money laundering. Shah’s legal team attempted to have the charges dismissed in August 2021, but a judge denied the request.
Smith switched his plea to guilty that November, and Shah did the same at a hearing in July 2022. During her sentencing in January, she apologized for her actions.
“I am sorry. My actions have hurt innocent people,” she said at the time. “I want to apologize by saying, I am doing all I can to earn the funds to pay restitution.”
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The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City premieres Tuesday, Sept. 5 at 9 p.m. ET on Bravo.