Mind you this horse has no problem with anyone coming up and loving on him, in fact he lavishes it, he just acted scared, flighty, erratic, ect when a halter or lead was even introduced.
With that being said, the owners have openly admitted to "spoiling" him. Which in itself is a problem. I see it as they assumed they had an abused horse and instead of working with him properly they spoiled him to try and make right any wrong doings they think were done to him in his life? I'm not positive.
But it turned out to be exactly as I thought in the first place, he's not "afraid" of the halter or the lead, in fact, once we finally did get the lead around his neck (which we did using advance and walk away techniques, using a flag to keep him in place when he tried to bolt or turn his ass towards us, and when I say "put him in his place" I by no means mean we were striking the horse, I mean using the flag as an extension of the arm to position him to when he should be respectfully, and letting him try and tire himself out but see that he's not going to get away with the same crap he has been) But so once we finally did get the lead rope around his neck, he stood perfectly stock still and let us halter him without blowing, huffing, whites of the eyes anything.
So this is a horse which turns out to be as I assumed, someone taught some nasty habits to and then a couple "adopted him" being a little more horse then they could handle and believing he was abused because of his behavior ended up unknowingly re enforcing it to make a spoiled brat.
So now he's haltered with a lead attached to him (as he's not necessarily afraid of the rope itself but he is jumpy about it because he's associated it with work, and that it seems is where the true issue is) and tomorrow will begin our long journey of desensitizing, learning proper respect and ground manners, and eventually... the rest of what he needs to know to graduate this class. Ill keep you guys posted on his progress the further it develops :) and thank you all for taking the time to comment with such helpful insights.