City Spokesperson Denies That Mayor Rob Ford Asked City Staff to Destroy Records
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City Spokesperson Denies That Mayor Rob Ford Asked City Staff to Destroy Records

The Star suggests scandal-battered Ford tried to have records destroyed. The City says otherwise.

Earlier today, the Star, citing unnamed sources, reported that something weird (or rather, something else weird) was going on at City Hall. According to these sources, someone ordered the destruction of email and telephone records belonging to three senior staffers—Mark Towhey, George Christopoulos, and Isaac Ransom—who have left Mayor Rob Ford’s employ in the past week. (Towhey was fired, reportedly for telling the mayor to go to rehab. The other two resigned.)

This is an issue because the some of the mayor’s records are subject to freedom-of-information requests from members of the public. Destroying them could violate the law. Another concern is that the records could contain evidence related to the now-famous iPhone video that supposedly shows Ford smoking crack.

Earlier this afternoon, City spokesperson Jackie DeSouza tried to put fears to rest with a statement to the press. According to CP24, she said, “I can confirm the Mayor’s Office did not ask the City to destroy records from any staff in their office. The City has bylaws and policies in place to ensure that city records are not destroyed.” She went on to say that the Mayor’s “personal, political, and constituency business” would be exempt from Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, and that only City records are subject to City bylaws that govern what can be destroyed and what can’t.

So either the Star‘s sources were misguided, or something else is going on. Maybe we’ll find out!

CORRECTION: May 29, 2013, 6:05 PM This post originally said that the Star‘s sources accused Mayor Ford of ordering the destruction of records. In fact, the Star‘s article doesn’t speculate on who might have given the order.