Gawker publishes a reconstruction of the events that allegedly led to the creation of the now-infamous video.
Earlier this week, Rob Ford’s crack scandal was showing signs of blowing over, as exhausted reporters began to give up their vigil outside the mayor’s office at City Hall. How quickly things change. Thanks to some fresh revelations, there’s once again no end in sight.
Gawker, citing information from an unnamed source, has just published an article that reconstructs the sequence of events that supposedly led to the creation of the now-infamous video that allegedly shows Ford smoking crack.
The Gawker article makes the following claims, which we have no way of verifying:
- Ford frequented a home, at 15 Windsor Road in North Etobicoke, that was known to neighbours as “a crackhouse, essentially.”
- Fabio Basso, the son of the owner of the home, is Ford’s longtime friend.
- When visiting, Ford would go on drug “binges” with members of the Basso family in the basement of the home.
- The crack video was recorded six to eight months ago during one of these binges, when drug dealers from the neighbouring apartment building at 320 Dixon Road were called over to supply Ford and others at the Windsor Road house with crack.
- The photo that was published along with the reports about the video by both Gawker and the Toronto Star was taken the same night as the video. Gawker‘s source told the website that the group that brought the drugs over asked for a photo with the mayor. Fabio Basso didn’t want them to take it inside the house, and so “Ford ran outside like a schoolgirl to have that picture taken.”
- Days after Gawker broke the story of the video’s existence, “two large men” went to the home and demanded that Fabio Basso help them find the person who took the video.
- After a few days of repeat visits, one of the men returned to the home and beat Basso and his girlfriend with a steel pipe, putting Basso in the hospital.
Some details of this story are corroborated elsewhere. Both the Globe and the Star have published articles that identify 15 Windsor Road as the address where a photo was taken of Ford with his arms around two men who were later on the wrong end of a shooting. The photo was provided to reporters by the owner of the crack video as a way of establishing his credibility.
The Star‘s article identifies the Basso family as the home’s owners and says the place has a neighbourhood reputation for being somehow involved with the drug trade. The article also clarifies the relationship between Ford and Fabio Basso: they knew each other from high school, it says.
The Star also agrees that police responded to a home invasion and assault at 15 Windsor Road recently—though its article doesn’t mention a steel pipe. A police spokesman told the paper that the attack happened on May 21.
For its part, Gawker says its source knew some now-established details of the case before they were made public, which would seem to vouch for his or her reliability.
Many of the above details have not been confirmed by another source outside of Gawker‘s contact. As more and more articles are published, however, a picture of sorts is slowly coming into focus—not just of one particular moment, but a bigger portrait of the mayor’s alleged ongoing behaviour. Rob Ford continues to refuse to answer questions about the evolving story, and has not yet responded in any way to this latest development.