LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Days after actor Nathan Chasing Horse was arrested and accused of sexually assaulting underage girls in what police call a cult called “The Circle,” a former member spoke to 8 News Now.
Kortnee Ward said she was part of “The Circle” at the home in North Las Vegas where Chasing Horse was arrested.
Ward said a member who later became her boyfriend took her in when she was homeless at 17 years old.
“I was told to you know basically treat him like a king,” Ward said of Chasing Horse.
She belonged to the cult for about a year and had a child with another member.
“From day one I was abused verbally, mentally, and physically,” she said.
Though Ward escaped months ago, she described what were known as “ceremonies” in the cult.
“All the windows would be blacked out, you wouldn’t be able to see anything,” she recalled.
Ward also said in the darkness music would play as contact was made with “spirits.”
“I started seeing flashing lights, and I heard rattling, and I even felt something touch me one time,” she added.
Ward also claimed many were given concentrated forms of marijuana called medicine or “Phoenix Tears.”
“In ceremonies, he would come with the girls in a straight line,” she said.
Ward told 8 News Now the girls were Chasing Horse’s wives, many of whom investigators allege were forced to have sex with him as minors.
She also added that she witnessed a member’s daughter “chosen” before she was 12 years old.
“We were told she was different, she was special,” Ward recalled. “And I never understood what that meant.”
Kortnee said when Chasing Horse’s ‘helpers’ tried to trap and threaten her, she got away.
Now that she’s safe, she hopes others can understand.
“You just have to trust your gut sometimes,” Ward concluded. ‘Because I didn’t trust my gut and I should have the whole time.”
Ward told 8 News Now because she was not Native American, she was not allowed to speak with Chasing Horse directly, but she described him as ‘always quiet’ and everyone was expected to treat him as ‘more than human.’
Kortnee said her daughter, who she had while she was a part of ‘The Circle,’ is still with a family affiliated with Chasing Horse.