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Old 05-17-2013, 02:28 AM   #1
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Video that appears to show Toronto Mayor Rob Ford smoking crack shopped to media





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A cellphone video that appears to show Mayor Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine is being shopped around Toronto by a group of Somali men involved in the drug trade.

Two Toronto Star reporters have viewed the video three times. It appears to show Ford in a room, sitting in a chair, wearing a white shirt, top buttons open, inhaling from what appears to be a glass crack pipe. Ford is incoherent, trading jibes with an off-camera speaker who goads the clearly impaired mayor by raising topics including Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and the Don Bosco high school football team Ford coaches.

“I’m f---ing right-wing,” Ford appears to mutter at one point. “Everyone expects me to be right-wing. I’m just supposed to be this great.…” and his voice trails off. At another point he is heard calling Trudeau a “fag.” Later in the 90-second video he is asked about the football team and he appears to say (though he is mumbling), “they are just f---ing minorities.”

How can you indicate what the person is actually doing or smoking?

Ford's lawyer

The Star had no way to verify the authenticity of the video, which appears to clearly show Ford in a well-lit room. The Star was told the video was shot during the past winter at a house south of Dixon Rd. and Kipling Avenue. What follows is an account based on what both reporters viewed on the video screen. Attempts to reach the mayor and members of his staff to get comment on this story were unsuccessful.

A lawyer retained by Ford, Dennis Morris, said that Thursday evening’s publication by the U.S.-based Gawker website of some details related to the video was “false and defamatory.” Morris told the Star that by viewing any video it is impossible to tell what a person is doing. “How can you indicate what the person is actually doing or smoking?” Morris said.

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Ford’s chief of staff, Mark Towhey, would not listen to questions by the Star on Thursday night and abruptly hung up when the Star called.

The video was taken on a smartphone by a person who said he has supplied crack cocaine to the mayor.

Throughout the video Ford’s eyes are half-closed. He lolls back in his chair, sometimes waving his arms around erratically. He raises a lighter in his hand at several points and moves it in a circle motion beneath the glass bowl of the pipe, then inhales deeply.

The Star reporters (Donovan and Doolittle) were shown the video on the evening of Friday, May 3, in the back of a car parked in an apartment complex at Dixon Rd. near Kipling Ave. in the north end of Etobicoke. The reporters were allowed to watch and listen to the video three times. After, both reporters separately made written notes of what they saw and heard. Both reporters, prior to watching the video, studied numerous city-hall-related videos of Ford and, to the best of the reporter’s abilities, they separately concluded the man in the video was Ford.

In the video, what appears to be afternoon sunlight is streaming through partially closed window blinds, lighting Ford’s face. The video ends with the ringing of a cellphone (it is not clear if it is the cellphone that is being used to video the scene). The ring tone, which is a song, startles the mayor, whose slitted eyes open a bit, and he is heard to say, “That phone better not be on.”

The Star was approached with an offer to purchase the video shortly after the Star’s story on Ford’s removal from the Garrison Ball due to apparent intoxication of some sort. The story, published March 26 of this year, described a concern by unnamed associates and staffers at city hall that Ford had a substance abuse problem. Ford dismissed the Star story, called the Star “pathological liars” and invited the newspaper to sue him. Garrison Ball attendees interviewed by the Star did not say they smelled alcohol. One said, “He seemed either drunk, high or had a medical condition.”

After the story was published the Star was contacted by two separate people who purported to have information on Ford abusing crack cocaine.

One person, who described himself as an organizer in the Somali community, told the Star he had copies of a video that, he said, showed Ford smoking crack. This man was acting as a sort of broker for the person who had shot the video. What followed was a protracted discussion between the man and Star reporters. The broker said he represented two Somali men who had supplied crack cocaine to the mayor in the Dixon Rd. area. The Star was not able to verify those claims.

The man said his two associates (one had been present when the video was made and had done the filming) wanted “six figures for the video.” At another point he said they had originally wanted $1 million, but he had convinced them to lower the price. Asked why they were selling the video, the man said the two who claimed ownership of the video wanted to make a change in their lives and use the money to move out west to Calgary.

The Star did not pay money and did not obtain a copy of the video.

Initially, the Somali man who contacted the Star said he had information about “a Toronto politician.” When the Star met him the first time, he showed a photo of Ford dressed in sweatpants, standing in the driveway of a brick house with three other men. The one on the left in the picture had apparently been killed the previous week on King St. near the Loki Lounge. The man, with his strong forehead and distinctive jaw line, looked like Anthony Smith, 21, who indeed had been killed recently.

Over the last month the Star has had several meetings with the man who was acting as a broker, culminating with the May 3 meeting at the Dixon Rd. apartment complex.

The reporters had told the man that they wanted to see the video. A meeting was arranged. First, the reporters were told to drive to the parking lot of an Etobicoke strip mall. They were told to leave their bags and cellphones in their own cars and get in his. The drive lasted less than five minutes. They pulled into the parking lot of the Dixon Rd. highrise complex.

The man got out of his car and returned with his associate.

The associate, also Somali, was a man in his early to mid-20s. He looked nervous and was shaking slightly. He had thick scabs on his arm.

He pulled out an iPhone — he would not let the reporters hold it. At first he wouldn’t let the sound play, but then relented.

In a video clip less than two minutes long, an incoherent and rambling Mayor Rob Ford can clearly be seen smoking what appears to be crack cocaine.

He is sitting on a chair holding a glass pipe with a blackened top and a lighter. Ford is the only person on the video, but there are at least two other people in the room — one, a man who said he is his dealer, secretly recording him, and another, an anonymous voice asking him questions.

The footage begins with the mayor mumbling. His eyes are half-closed. He waves his arms around erratically. A man’s voice tells him he should be coaching football because that’s what he’s good at.

Ford agrees and nods his head, bobbing on his chair.

He says something like “Yeah, I take these kids . . . minorities” but soon he rambles off again.

Ford says something like: “Everyone expects me to be right-wing, I’m . . .” and again he trails off.

At one point he raises the lighter and moves it in a circle motion beneath the pipe, inhaling deeply.

Next, the voice raises the name of Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau. The man says he can’t stand him and that he wants to shove his foot up the young leader’s “ass so far it comes out the other end.”

Ford nods and bobs on his chair and appears to say, “Justin Trudeau’s a fag.”

The man taping the mayor keeps the video trained on him. Then the phone rings. Ford looks at the camera and says something like “that better not be on.”

The phone shuts off.

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford in 'crack cocaine' video scandal | Toronto Star
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Old 05-17-2013, 06:00 AM   #2
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this guy always reminds me of chris farley
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Old 05-17-2013, 06:50 AM   #3
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Holy shit...when I heard about this, I said to myself, "they are going to be done now, right?"

Bye bye Mr.Ford?

Seriously, out of a pile of shitty fucking politicians that the world has access to, this guy has to be one of the worst. I don't even need him to be smoking crack to say all this. I hope his lawyers tell us its cough medicine. Everytime he opens his mouth, intelligence gets sucked out of the room.
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Old 05-17-2013, 06:55 AM   #4
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The Gawker article that broke the story also suggests that Ford has the same dealer as a prominant hockey analyst.
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:51 AM   #5
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Wh cant our mayor be this cool?
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:09 AM   #6
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Wh cant our mayor be this cool?
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Mayor Moonbeam only uses love as his drug of choice. And everyone is allowed to smoke it with him.
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Old 05-17-2013, 08:23 AM   #7
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Wow that's pretty intense. Interesting to see how it all plays out.
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:12 AM   #8
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Lol this happened to marion barry, mayor of dc too!

People will care more about calling trudeau a fag then the crack
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:38 AM   #9
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We may snicker over here because we live in Vancouver, but many average people see themselves in Rob Ford - overweight, prone to say what's on their mind rather than saying nothing at all, and a guy with sins.

I bet this will blow over, like the other scandals.
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:57 AM   #10
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a lot of high profile politicians/police/etc have addictions that would ruin them if it came to light

it's happened before and it's happening now and it'll happen again
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Old 05-17-2013, 09:59 AM   #11
WOAH...shut the music off...
 
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this popped up in my mind when i read about this

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Old 05-17-2013, 10:23 AM   #12
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Sadly, I would rather have Rob Ford as Mayor of my city over Moonbeam Gregor
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:43 AM   #13
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The cheap-ass douchebags at Gawker are trying to crowdfund $200k to purchase the video.:
http://gawker.com/we-are-raising-200...ford-508230073
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:03 PM   #14
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Sadly, I would rather have Rob Ford as Mayor of my city over Moonbeam Gregor
Trust me you don't.

Earlier this week, Ford walked out of the council meeting to go to McDonalds during a debate on funding tools for transit. He also stated at the beginning of the meeting that he had no items on his agenda for the meeting. WORST mayor ever.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:03 PM   #15
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The Mayor is a shit show and awesome, I would vote for him!!







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Old 05-17-2013, 12:24 PM   #16
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it made CNN.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:27 PM   #17
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Trust me you don't.

Earlier this week, Ford walked out of the council meeting to go to McDonalds during a debate on funding tools for transit. He also stated at the beginning of the meeting that he had no items on his agenda for the meeting. WORST mayor ever.
Ford would never build bike lanes and he drives an Escalade like a boss to work. To some, his values are what trump everything else despite the fact that he has made a fool of himself on many occasions.

And honestly, Robertson hasn't been all that bad as he has kept the developers happy and that's who runs this town anyway.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:36 PM   #18
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What's a middle-aged white man that's got a pretty good job doing smoking crack? Couldn't spend an extra couple bucks on some disco shit
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:38 PM   #19
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You know, to me and only me, the mark of quality journalism is going around to strangers with your hands out so you can buy a tape from drug dealers and publish it online.

I know, I know...they aren't "journalists" in the true sense of the word.

And would I feel better if they just bought it without crowdsourcing? Maybe...it seems for my crowdsourced donation, I seem to buy them traffic, ad dollars and notoriety while I get a bill, but hey! I get to watch a video of the crack-smoking mayor.

Does no one realize that if no one buys this for 200k, then the price goes down? Wait a week, and the ILLICIT DRUG DEALERS I'm sure will trade you the video for $50 and a smile. It's worth NOTHING if everyone had just a smidge of integrity.

And these people running the same website that casts judgment on others.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:43 PM   #20
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^^
Its how the world works these days...how do cops solve major crimes? Pay an informant. How do you get a good scoop? Pay someone with inside info
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:46 PM   #21
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For me it is the asking for money/crowdsourcing that bothers me. I mean, if you call yourself a journalist or news source, then do your own fucking job, don't get your readers to pay for it.
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Old 05-17-2013, 12:57 PM   #22
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lol

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Old 05-17-2013, 01:03 PM   #23
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The cheap-ass douchebags at Gawker are trying to crowdfund $200k to purchase the video.:
http://gawker.com/we-are-raising-200...ford-508230073
I don't think it's about being cheap, so much as it's about trying to get their readers actually involved in the story, rather than just reading it. People feel involved, you get some viral buzz going, without it seeming like CONTRIVED viral buzz.

Not condoning it, BTW, just saying that the crowdsourcing here feels more like a stunt (or part of the stunt) than a simple fundraising.

And seriously, the fact that the video holder is trying to shop this thing to the highest bidder sounds REALLY hinky - makes me super suspicious that the guy in the video is a look-alike or something, they faked the thing, they're gonna get the money, and disappear by the time the buyer finds out it's a fake.

Of course, knowing Ford's history, it's entirely likely it's legit... but something about it just doesn't feel that way.
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Old 05-17-2013, 01:39 PM   #24
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seems more like they're letting their readers take the risk of paying some drug dealers money and maybe losing it instead of their company
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Old 05-17-2013, 02:13 PM   #25
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This Is The Most Wonderful Legal Threat EVER | Popehat

The letter purportedly from his lawyer...which came from a hotmail (!) account:
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Update: We've received an email from Dennis Morris, a gentleman with a hotmail.com email address purporting to be Ford's attorney. Here is the message. We haven't corrected its formatting.

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Greetings;I am a lawyer,and have been contacted by Mayor Ford's office in reference to your indicating you will post a photo of Mayor Ford smoking crack cocaine. Mayor Ford denies such took place,and if such posting occurs,it is false and defamatory,and you will be held legally accountable.In reference to the photo,you wish to publish, Mayor Ford has his photo taken daily,sometimes with others.

If the person you mention is now deceased,it is sad,regardless of his alleged background.

Please govern yourself accordingly.

Dennis Morris.
Popehat calls it the Most Wonderful Legal Threat EVER. Considering these guys have covered free speech issues including Charles Carreon vs The Oatmeal...that's an impressive feat.
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