The mayor refuses to answer questions about warrant details—which include a description of the crack video.
Newly released police documents related to the Project Brazen 2 investigation describe the crack video that features Rob Ford and indicate that the mayor was afforded an opportunity to view the video, but chose not to.
The mayor has repeatedly said that he wants to see the video—that he wants everyone to see it—most recently reiterating this request during his Jimmy Kimmel appearance. According to the “Information to Obtain” (ITO) documents, the police let Ford know through his lawyer Dennis Morris on October 28 that he could see the video, with the condition that he could not publicly comment on the contents.
The ITO also includes a detailed description of the scene in question:
At one point Mayor Ford holds the glass cylinder to his mouth. Lights his lighter and applies the flame to the tip of the glass cylinder in a circular motion.
After several seconds Mayor Ford appears to inhale the vapour which is produced, then exhale the vapour.
The ITO, which includes allegations that have not been proven in court, goes on to characterize the regular communications between Sandro Lisi and Ford as “Indicative to that of drug trafficking.”
The ITO indicates that the video, which is one minute long, was shot on February 17 at 8:00 p.m., and was initially offered for sale to a CTV cameraman that month. There is also an indication that there is a missing deleted video, referred to as “File 313.” The crack video was identified as “File 312.”
According to previously released freedom of information requests, the mayor had two scheduled events that evening: a calligraphy and paintings exhibition at 5:00 p.m. that was attended by Councillor Chin Lee (Ward 41, Scarborough-Rouge River), and a Lunar New Year gala in Richmond Hill at 7:00 p.m. The mayor did not attend either event, and also did not do his Sunday radio show, citing Family Day weekend. He had three events scheduled for the holiday Monday on February 18: accepting a donation to Riverdale Farm with Norm Kelly (Ward 40, Scarborough-Agincourt), a Toronto Waterfront Family Day event, and a Black History Month event at Mackenzie House. He did not attend any of the events.
On February 19, two days after the crack video was allegedly shot, Ford spoke with reporters about the need to curtail gang activity in the city:
We’re trying everything we can and I just don’t have a magic answer right now. If I did, I’d be the first one to use it. But as an individual, I’m doing everything I can.
It’s the gangs. I think we really have to go after these gangs. But it’s hard to tell who’s really in the gangs, and what they’re all about. Police are doing everything they can. So I’m just frustrated. It really bothers me when I hear about this.
Nine months before making this statement, Ford was the only member of council to vote against accepting $350,000 from the federal government for gang prevention programs in Toronto.
Despite numerous opportunities to respond to the latest developments in the case, Ford did not offer a comment to reporters—although he did speak to Ford-friendly Toronto Sun journalist Joe Warmington over the phone. He also made himself available to Esquire restaurant critic Giles Coren, with whom he bought street meat. For his part, Councillor Doug Ford (Ward 2, Etobicoke North), who is also the mayor’s campaign manager, suggested that the release of the ITO was had occurred because it’s an election year.
For their part, the competing mayoral candidates criticized the mayor to varying degrees.
Just been monstered by massive media scrum as bad boy Toronto mayor Rob Ford bought me a (delicious) hot dog. pic.twitter.com/s3jqTid7VA
— Giles Coren (@gilescoren) March 19, 2014
Seeking to get away from reporters asking questions raised by the latest ITO release, the mayor directed City security to push against reporters to clear a path for him. One security guard pushed a journalist to the ground, and Ford pushed down a Globe and Mail photojournalist. The mayor did not answer any questions. He later told the Sun he was just “going about his day.”