bash – why is the CRLF missing from each line when a directory listing is stored as a variable?

In Ubuntu 20.04, when I run this command, I get this result:

On the CLI:

#find /home/ftpusers/ -name '*.jpg' -type f -printf '%p %u %TY%Tm%Td%TH%TM%.2TSn' | sort --stable --reverse --key=3,4

yields: (Perfect!)

/home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505055737010_GH53J.jpg 5501 20200505115737
/home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505055453330_0207.jpg 5501 20200505115453
/home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505055033850_FPM3494.jpg 5501 20200505115034
/home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505054800520_MKR1529.jpg 5501 20200505114801
/home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505054755850_C0NTRACT.jpg 5501 20200505114755
/home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505054501710_HYY8462.jpg 5501 20200505114501

But in a script when I try to capture the output of the same command, the CRLF gets left off and all data gets lumped into one line without a CRLF.

Like so:

#!/bin/bash
files=$(find /home/ftpusers/ -name '*.jpg' -type f -printf '%p %u %TY%Tm%Td%TH%TM%.2TSn' | sort --stable --reverse --key=3,4)

echo $files

yields:

/home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505045623550_J4171.jpg 5501 20200505105624 /home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505044851810_C0NTRACT
.jpg 5501 20200505104852 /home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505044440130_7731.jpg 5501 20200505104441 /home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200
505044243730_CC4480.jpg 5501 20200505104244 /home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505043703450_55L07.jpg 5501 20200505103707 /home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1
800WLS610Entry_20200505041813080_MJ4465.jpg 5501 20200505101814 /home/ftpusers/1800wls1/1800WLS610Entry_20200505041115600_C0NTRACT.jpg 5501 20200505101118 /h
ome/ftpusers/1800wls2/1800WLSSanFelipeExit_20200504212713750_CMV72.jpg 5502 20200505022717 /home/ftpusers/1800wls2/1800WLSSanFelipeExit_20200504212634020_BH7
X433.jpg 5502 20200505022640 /home/ftpusers/1800wls2/1800WLSSanFelipeExit_20200504211114600_LTM4327.jpg 5502 20200505021117 /home/ftpusers/1800wls2/1800WLSSa
nFelipeExit_20200504211021870_67225Y9.jpg 5502 20200505021027

How can I retain the CRLF? I need to process one line at a time.

I have even tried this:

#!/bin/bash
find /home/ftpusers/ -name '*.jpg' -type f -printf '%p %u %TY%Tm%Td%TH%TM%.2TSn' | sort --stable --reverse --key=3,4 > /tmp/filelist
files=$(cat /tmp/filelist)
filecount=$(echo $files | wc -l)
echo $files

When executed, $filecount = 1 (as in all of that data is only one line!) and the echo of $files yields one line of data all lumped together.

Thanks in advance!