December 4, 1995 - First Encounter
Today I was going home. That is what I thought when I had awoken that December morning in Gresham, Oregon. A month had passed since my entry into Pioneer Trails Treatment facility. I had completed the 30 day drug rehab program that I had been sent to by my parents in Washington. The staff all congratulated me as I got closer to my departure from the treatment facility. I felt proud and encouraged that I had completed the program and was finally going to be going home. But that is not what happened that day. I didn’t go home. I went to hell. A day that was supposed to be marked by change and hope for sobriety was instead made into a real nightmare I could not wake up from. The nightmare continued for the next seven months, a horror story so inhumane, most shy away from the sadistic details that are my memories. A sexually abusive, mentally and psychologically deranged owner of multiple boys’ behavior modification camps held captive over a hundred plus boys, me included. That day marked the last day I felt any security, the last day I would be allowed to hope or even smile. That day turned into one I would never forget.
Dan Peart, The Majestic Ranch for Boys:
The Untold Story of a WWASP Survivor
My hands were sweaty as I maneuvered my wrists painfully behind my back. The handcuffs were tight around my wrists, digging painfully into my skin. I was seated in the backseat of an 1998 Oldsmobile Delta that held the distinct smell of vomit and urine, nauseating and burning my eyes as it smothered the air around me. In front of me sat Dan Peart, the man that I would grow to hate, the man who would change the rest of my life. In the driver’s seat sat the inbreed sexual predator I knew as Rick. Rick, I would learn, took part in raping, molesting and sexually assaulting over half of the boys at Majestic Ranch for boys. This “school” that claimed to be a paradise for children ages 9-18 was instead an imprisonment camp geared towards hopeless parents and troubled youth. The directors as well as all the staff employed at Majestic Ranch for boys (formerly Old West Academy) had knowledge and in some cases participated in the various abuses upon the trouble teens made to live there from months and often years. Moreover, not only did the founder of this particular “boarding school” or “behavior modification” facility know about these grievances towards the youth at Majestic, Dan Peart, Owner, endorsed and encouraged them as well. He showed his dedication to his money making scheme and his loyalty to his affiliates like Robert Lichfield (Proprietor/Founder WWASP) by instigating the most heinous sexual and physical abuses, molestation, brain washing and overall manipulation of every child to endure a stint at the Majestic Ranch for Boys. Not only did he instigate it and condone all the abuses towards the young victims, he thoroughly enjoyed it. As of today, Dan Peart and his affiliates have served no jail time for any of the crimes they committed towards their victims. Most recently, Mr. Peart has been applying for Permits within the state of Montana, where he and his wife own a hotel, that will permit the transformation of said hotel into what he is hoping will be the opening of yet another one of his torture camps.
Kidnapped….what else would it be called?
We arrived at the airport in Oregon where I made my last dashing attempt at escape from these men I saw only as kidnappers. I had never seen them in my life, nor had I had a conversation with either of my parents telling me I would not be coming home. Quickly breaking free, I ran up to the nearest security officer I could spot, begging him please to help me escape these maniac kidnappers that had taken me from the treatment facility only hours before. To my relief the officer then turned to Dan Peart and placed handcuffs on him, placing him under arrest. If I only knew now that this would be the only time in the next nearly 20 years he would be in cuffs I suppose I would have tried a little harder to dramatize and delay boarding the airplane.
But this was all too bittersweet as Dan Peart provided custody paperwork to the security officer that implied his legal ownership over me. The officer looked down at me with pity yet began reaching for his ring of keys. Many kids had come through hollering the same spiel as I had, screaming my unlawful detention by these kidnappers. Custody paperwork and “transport men”, as they were referred to, were coming through airports and train stations toting a single paper that decided our fate. These Men, sometimes retired police offers and military personnel were showing up in the middle of the night, stealing young children from their warm American beds. A single signature of consent concluded the custody paperwork of both my parents. Their signatures were on the “contract” that placed their parental rights into the sole custody of a child abuser and sexual predator, Dan Peart.
In hindsight, I think many of us WWASP victims of Majestic Ranch would have taken any opportunity to impose justice on him via hand grenade, sawed off shotgun or simply use his own tactics of starvation and neglect to eliminate him. If we had known there would never be any justice for us. If I had known, or my parents had known maybe then things could be different. But the World Wide Web and Google didn’t exist yet so this couldn’t truly be foreseen. But now? Nearly 20 years later…and nothing? What happened to our justice system…who forfeited my rights and the other nearly 20,000 youth who have gone through these WWASP camps? As it were, at 15 I had no one that would help me, nowhere to go. My parents had already been successfully convinced of the saving graces that Dan Peart promised to deliver. A completely conformed youth when I came out, as their Old West Academy website so broadly GUARANTEE’s. I guess hindsight is not that great when you’re looking down twenty years of successful manipution and abuse, facing countless victim allegations and have yet to spend a day in jail. Understandably, we are unable to see the future or change the past, but we are able to look at the atrocities of both and find truth and knowledge in what we can prevent. Prevention can begin today, at any moment as we sit here and are aware of what is going on in the rural areas throughout this country…as we stand by and parents continue to send their “troubled youth” to camps like Majestic Ranch (still open and actively enrolling students) allowing perverts like Dan Peart to have complete and uninhibited access to your child.
Lesson One in Behavior Modification
I watched the snow fall sideways outside that dusty Oldsmobile window. I yearned for any clue or inclination of where I was being taken to and for how long. Every question I asked was answered with the same response. I was told we were heading to the airport to pick up another boy like me. An “out of control” adolescent that would soon know the true meaning of Behavior Modification, as I surely would. After hours of travel we had finally arrived at Majestic Ranch for boys located in Randolph, Utah approximately 150 miles from Salt Lake City. Again, my instincts were to fight or run away from these goons that thought they were going to confine me in a camp that I had not consented to. My attempt at an altercation led to my first punishment while at Majestic Ranch. I spent that first night being punished through what was called consequence continuum, a part of their behavior modification practices. Blackened toes hung over the 2'x3' milk crate I warily stood on. Besides the jet lag, sleep deprivation and ever increasing hunger, I had been standing on this milk crate for nearly two hours commencing my first punishment. My shoes and socks had been taken from me as part of my punishment as well. Thin clothing hung off my body wet and turning to hard packs of ice, white snow continued to fall around me. Cold stung my red nose, while dropping temperatures nearly -20 degrees began to rattle my body in painful spasms. I stayed on that milk crate for another three hours, my muscles literally frozen in painful contraction. Dan Peart, apparently satisfied with my punishment, brought me into House 2, where I would stay for the next six months. After such a brutally exhausting day that ended with five hours frozen on a milk crate you would think that I would have went right to sleep. That was not the case for me. I spent that first night emotionally broken, blindsided by the sudden change in my parents decision to not let me come home and instead begin entry into this boys camp without a word of warning.
The original testimony (ireport CNN)