Toronto mayoral car-crash: homicide detectives search mayor's office after tip on crack-smoking video; top staffers quit

More drama from the world of Toronto Mayor "Laughable Bumblefuck" Ford -- first, reporters from two rival news entities independently verified the existence of a video showing the mayor smoking what appeared to be crack cocaine and passing racist remarks about the kids on the football team he coached.

The mayor was told by the Catholic high school where he coached football that he was no longer welcome around their boys. The mayor's chief of staff, Mark Towhey, was escorted out of the building by security after the mayor fired him, allegedly after he told the mayor to go into rehab, and insisted that it would be a bad idea to take back the athletic equipment he'd given to the school that had just canned him.

Then, after the mayor and his brother, Councillor Doug Ford, pursued an approach of near-total silence (apart from some perfunctory denials), the Globe and Mail finally ran an investigative piece on the mayor's family that it had been working on for 18 months, detailing extensive familial connections to unsavory criminal drug-dealers (and the KKK!) and alleging that Councillor Doug Ford had been one of the top hash dealers in Toronto's western suburb of Etobicoke. This prompted the Ford brothers to finally break their media silence and go on a mini press-tour, calling reporters "a bunch of maggots" and Globe editor-in-chief John Stackhouse "a disgusting human being," denying everything. They especially denied that there was a video smoking crack, leading some to speculate that the wealthy Ford family had bought off the video from the drug dealers who'd been shopping it around.

Then Toronto homicide detectives raided the mayor's office, following a tip that the mayor's staff knew the where the video was.

And now, finally, the mayor's press secretary George Christopoulos and his assistant, Isaac Ransom, have both quit.

Mr. Ford told a scrum of journalists outside his office that the pair had “decided to go … down a different avenue.” He said he was told of their departures around noon.

“I wish them the best of luck in their future endeavours and I want to thank them for working hard in this office,” he said, flanked by his brother Councillor Doug Ford.

Mr. Ford declined to say why Mr. Christopoulos and Mr. Ransom had quit, but said he never wants to “hold anyone back from moving on for future endeavours or opportunities that they may have.”

Mr. Ford announced that Amin Massoudi, Doug’s executive assistant, had agreed to become his new communications director. An earlier statement said Sunny Petrujkic would be interim press secretary.

The mayor also responded to a Globe and Mail report that a senior member of his office was interviewed by police last week about a tip linking the alleged crack video to a recent Toronto homicide.

“Everything’s fine. I have no idea what the police are investigating,” Mr. Ford said.

Two senior members of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's staff resign [Elizabeth Church and Jill Mahoney/Globe and Mail]


    1. Inquiring minds want to know: What the hell was a guy like Ford doing with PR flacks who even know what a ‘Principle’ is? They are supposed to drill that out of you during basic…

      1.  Analrapists end up with legal representation that works in their clients best interest too.

        Probably they both realized that it could be their last job if they didn’t jump right then and there.

    2. I’m really saddened that the outgoing PR people didn’t say anything.  I was hoping for a quote like, “Honey, I can not make a lasagna out of dog doo and dead leaves!”

    3. Don’t forget this gem:

      The mayor also responded to a Globe and Mail report that a senior member of his office was interviewed by police last week about a tip linking the alleged crack video to a recent Toronto homicide.
      “Everything’s fine. I have no idea what the police are investigating,” Mr. Ford said.

      No idea, Rob? They couldn’t possibly be investigating the allegations of your alleged crack use and the circumstances surrounding the death of the young man allegedly involved in your alleged crack habit, the existence of which you’ve acknowledged by denying. Nope. Rob Ford has no idea why the police are investigating him.

      Alternatively, he doesn’t know WHICH skeleton of his they’re choosing to investigate. Is it the crack? Is it the ties to the drug scene and dealers? Is it Doug’s past despite his current position as a Councillor? Or something else*?

      *Speculation curtailed to avoid potential libel issues.

  1. Screw Hollywood, THIS is the blockbuster to watch this summer. Someone pass the popcorn.

      1. Dang, 12 years…
        Now we’re enjoying the hilarious resolution, but how did such a psychopath get taken seriously for 12 years?  Can anyone have faith in a system which allows someone like this to hold power at all, let alone for more than a decade?

        1. Listen, I don’t understand why they keep attending Maple Laughs games in droves, especially when Harold Ballard was running the show, when they haven’t won the Cup since 1967…

          It must be something the Lake Ontario water.

        2. Rob Ford has only been mayor for 2 years.  He was a city councilor before that.  I believe, as a councilor, he flew under the radar for most voters. For his mayoral campaign he preached fiscal responsibility while his opponents stumbled on incoherent platforms.  It’s only now, I think, that people are becoming more aware of his shortcomings … which are numerous. 

          As a side note, his drug and alcohol problems are getting all the attention, but worse than that, he’s ruining city planning and making costly short-term cuts.  He acts on impulse and is incapable of long-term planning or thinking through his ideas.

          1. He acts on impulse and is incapable of long-term planning or thinking through his ideas.

            Hey, lay off on the man, crack is a hell of a drug.

  2. I mentioned this in the other RoFo thread from earlier, but it would appear that he’s – within the last few weeks – had his hair, which was usually long enough to pull over his bald spot, shaved to stubble…  Hmmm. Wonder what that could be related to?

    I wonder if he’s had his fingernails removed too.

    1. Cue GATTICA-style OCD cleansing of every crevice and surface in the mayoral crib…

  3. I really don’t like Rob Ford and I have money riding on him being thrown out of office before he serves a full term.  That being said, this post is completely over the top and is even factually incorrect.  As far as I know the police have never “raided the mayor’s office”.  
    His supporters have been accusing the media of making things up for a long time, let’s not prove them right now.  The facts of this story are ridiculous and outrageous enough without having to make anything up or exaggerate anything.  Rob Ford will burn his own career and maybe his life without anyone’s help.

    1. True they didnt raid, and did not seek a warrant, though they pretty much had to be admitted or the shit on the fan would get heavier.

      They sent homicide detectives because those ore their top interviewers they claim.

      But one man involved is dead, and he got dead after the alleged timeline of events regarding the video began…

      1. Yeah, exactly.  The details of this are sordid enough without making stuff up.  
        My money is now on the police slowly chasing Ford’s Escalade down the 401 until it runs out of gas.

  4. I’m missing the car-crash mentioned in the title. Or is that supposed to be a metaphor?

    1. The normal metaphorical usage is ‘trainwreck'; but that sort of spending on public infrastructure is for commies.

        1. ..Um, if you’re talking about his sex life, shouldn’t that be ‘rubbing one off’?

  5. Congratulations Toronto! And here I thought – in my Yankee chauvinism – that such colossally ridiculous political circus acts were the exclusive domain of the USA. 

    Hisoner Ford is showing us how a real pro does it. I stand in awe.

  6. I always knew that city officials are corrupted, and I mean that for almost every official of almost every city in North America. It’s just about how well they cover their tracks. Some will take kickbacks from construction companies, some from small business owners to pursue their agenda, etc. I expect this kind of stuff to be there. I still must say that I am surprised at how low this is going.

    1. Dallas, man. Dallas. Taxi commission corruption, embezzlement, fraud, racism, standardized scholastic testing dodging, the chief of police stealing from the city, losing and then discovering bank accounts worth millions, the list goes on and on and on and on.

  7. Cory, the nickname you coined for Mr Ford has been promoted well; do you think it helps the message to repeat it? I wish Mr Ford would get neutral coverage, as the facts appear to speak for themselves.

  8. To be completely accurate this: 
    reporters from two rival news entities independently verified the existence of a video showing the mayor smoking what appeared to be crack cocaine

    isn’t true. Reporters asserted that the video exists. And corroborated each other’s stories. But that is NOT journalistic verification and it’s a disservice to the idea of reporting if you present it as such. 

    1. Rob Ford really is worthy of nearly every bad thing you can say about him, but it would be nice if some integrity in reporting could be kept.  This story is way over the top and contains factual errors.  The one you pointed out and the police have not “raided the mayor’s office.”  
      I’ve always been impressed with the writing on BoingBoing in general and Cory Doctorow’s in particular.  Until now.  Maybe it’s just me, but I think a correction to this post should be made and made soon.

  9. He just keeps on going.  You think after so many scandals he would just keep quiet for a while.

  10. Apparently Rod Blagojevich made an offer that he and Rob Ford would switch places. The Canadian government is seriously considering it because it would allow at least some decency to return to the Toronto mayor’s office.

    1. Well, that would put Ford in the pokey for roughly 9-10 years and at the same time unleash another dangerous asshole upon Toronto(decidedly one with better judgement, not good by a long shot but better). At least all Blago would do is try to sell the other brother’s Council Seat, lie about it and then end up in a Canadian jail.

      Alright, let’s trade. Meet me on the bridge between Detroit and Windsor at noon tomorrow.

  11. Okay, while this man seems like an idiot.. I find it equally telling that as Gawker got closer and closer to their “Crackstarter” goal, the video owner disappeared.    Which leads me to ask a question.. did this video ever really exist?  Supposedly , if earlier reports are to be believed, he had an “out” if anything ever happened to him.  Now, he’s stopped talking when it became more and more likely that the price would be met? 

    We’re asked to be obejective and think logically.  Logically, does any one else find it slightly suspicious that as it became more and more likely that the video guy was going to have to turn it over that he ceased communications with the top bidder?

    1. So a drug dealer is difficult to contact? In particular a drug dealer who may be attempting to extort the mayor of the largest city in Canada? While this could all be a con, if it is they chose their cover story well.

        1. I would think that if Gawker raised $200,000 for the purpose of buying the crack video, or for a drug addiction charity if the video cannot be purchased, and then turned around and bought a Tesla Model S, they’d end up in court before you could say “iPhone 4″. And Charles Carreon would curse his luck for picking the wrong charity drive to sue.

          No matter how convenient you might think it is that Gawker suddenly disclosed that they can’t reach him as the campaign looked like it might actually be successful, your plan has one hole in it: Gawker is/will be under the scrutiny of the Internet about what they do with the money, one way or another.

          1. Oh, I”m not saying gawker did anything wrong. I’m saying that I have doubts about the original person selling this.  Please recall, even if you dislike Rob Ford, the guy (by his own admission) went to Ford first and demanded the money or the tape get released.  Then he said that whoever comes up with the money first gets the tape, and even added “Good Luck Rob Ford” to the end of that.  

            This was an extortion attempt / blackmail attempt.  When Ford didn’t pay up, the guy , by his OWN ADMISSION,  went to the Toronto Star.  Who also refused to buy it.  Then he put it on the public market, and now here we are.

          2. What? Crack dealers having less than squeaky-clean morals? What’s this world coming to?

            And where’s this disclosure by the owner of the phone (a drug dealer or at least someone deeply involved in that scene in some way) that they went to Rob first and then threw it to the open market when he wouldn’t pay the price? Citation, please.

    2.  And is it telling that the source goes missing just prior to Ford’s announcement that the video does not exist on his radio show (sporting the new super-short cropped hair)?  Both Ford brothers disappeared from the public eye over the long weekend and I would bet money that they were working hard to find that tape and get rid of it.

      (Although I do find the logistics of getting some 200K transferred to a drug dealer across national boundaries daunting, I see no reason the think that Gawker’s plan was based on an invented video)

      1. The problem is, Gawker has had trouble contacting this guy since last week.   Long before the raid and the two PR guys quitting, and even Rob Ford’s recent statement about the video not existing.

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