The cast of Netflix's new documentary, Hell Camp: Teen Nightmare, has a lot to share about the dangers of "wilderness therapy."
Directed by Liza Williams, Hell Camp: Teen Nightmare tackles the dangers and the terrifying secrets faced by troubled teens who were sent to wilderness therapy. It also chronicled the controversies behind Steve Cortisano's "treatment option" known as Challenger Camp.
Hell Camp: Teen Nightmare made its debut on Netflix on December 27.
Every Cast Member of Hell Camp: Teen Nightmare
Chris Smith is a reporter from the Salt Lake Tribune who covered Steve Cortisano during his controversial career as the head of the Challenger Camp.
In the documentary, Chris gave an overview of how the Challenger Camp operates.
Lance “Horsehair” Jaggar
Serving as the field director of the controversial Challenger camp is Lance “Horsehair” Jaggar.
While Jaggar admitted that they managed to break down the teenagers in the camp, he pointed out that they didn't do it to "hurt" and "punish" them. Instead, they are doing it to get rid of their old habits and "rebuild" and help them to become a better person.
At age 15, Nadine joined Challenger Camp in August 1989.
Nadine unraveled how two men kidnapped her and forced her to join the said camp. She noted that the pair "grabbed [her] and forcibly removed [her] from her house" and they even gave her a note from her parents saying, "This is for the best. We love you."
The now-adult Nadine revealed how her experience in Challenger Camp was a nightmare from start to finish.
When she was 13 years old, Kinney joined Challenger Camp in August 1988.
Kinney shared that she didn't mind that "it was hard and dusty and dirty" during her stay. She even admitted that she "felt accomplished" at the end of every single day in camp.
Another former member of Challenger Camp is Matthew. He joined said camp in June 1990 when he was 15 years old.
Matthew recalled his past evil deeds that led him to a path toward the camp, with him even admitting that he was "constantly being arrested."
He revealed that one of the counselors hit him one day after he refused to get up.
Kari is Matthew's mother who reflected on the time of her son in Challenger Camp.
She said that her son would've been in jail or, worse, dead if they didn't try to do something about him.
Debbie Cartisano, Steve's ex-wife, opened up about her life with him during the whole wilderness camp fiasco.
She noted that the thing about her ex-husband was "people either loved him or despised him."
Max Jackson is a former sheriff of Kane County, Utah who responded to reports about Matthew's injuries and his eventual removal from the Challenger Camp.
Jackson recalled his reaction to seeing Matthew's state when he was sent to the hospital.
Sharon is Kristen's mother who decided to send her daughter to camp after failing the 10th grade and overdosing on antidepressants.
As a member of Challenger Camp, Kristen collapsed and died after completing a five-mile day hike.
In Hell Camp: Teen Nightmare, Sharon reflected on Kristen's childhood and how she became rebellious toward her.
David, Kristen's brother, joined Sharon in explaining what led to the decision to send his sister to Challenger Camp.
Charles Brofman, Steve Cartisano's defense attorney, joins the pool of interviewees of Hell Camp: Teen Nightmare.
Brofman pointed out that Cartisano's concept was "excellent" and "the core of what he did was quite remarkable."
Adam joined Healthcare America in May 1993 when he was 18 years old.
Adam admitted that he was an "angry kid," with him using the fact that he is adopted as an excuse.
Larry, Adam's father, recalled how his son was "out of control" when he was 18, leading to the decision to send him to Healthcare America.
He said that they were desperate and they had to do something then.
Similar to Larry, Ashley also joined Healthcare America in May 1993 when she was 15 years old.
Ashley said that she was a member of the program for nine months, noting that they were going from "island to island to island" throughout her stay.
She admitted that she was scared since she never knew when she was going home.
Catie Cartisano is Steve and Debbie's daughter.
In the documentary, Catie unveiled that she knew things were going bad financially during her childhood.
She also said that she was angry at her dad because she wanted him to pursue another career instead of the wilderness therapy route.
When he was 16 years old, Kurt joined Pacific Coast Academy in April 2000.
Kurt shared how his parents knew about the program and the financial cost that came along with it. He even revealed that his mom sold their house to send him to camp.
Amber was part of Pacific Coast Academy back in March 2000 when she was 14 years old.
Amber became friends with Kurt during their time in camp. She said that "it was strange" that Steve Cartisano sent one of his kids to the same camp.
Mary Lou is a former US Embassy worker from New Zealand who responded to a report about a problem in one of Steve Cartisano's camps.
Upon entering the camp, Mary Lou revealed that all of the children had been removed. She eventually found one last kid who was sick, and it was then that she found out that "they all had been deliberately moved off the camp."
Hell Camp: Teen Nightmare is now streaming on Netflix.