Six months before Scott MacIntyre accused Toronto Mayor Rob Ford of ordering the jailhouse beating that left him with a broken leg and shattered teeth, he wrote a Facebook message saying that the Ford family had always been fair to him and “it would be remiss to say any different,” according to a new book on the mayor.
Last week Mr. MacIntyre, the estranged common law spouse of Mr. Ford’s sister Kathy Ford, launched a lawsuit against Mayor Ford and Ontario’s Minister of Correctional Services, as well as others, alleging that a vicious jailhouse beating that he suffered nearly two years ago was designed to keep him quiet about the mayor’s substance abuse. But in July, when Toronto Star reporter Robyn Doolittle was researching her book Crazy Town: The Rob Ford Story, Mr. MacIntyre wrote two Facebook messages to her that included praise for the Fords and “the great job Rob has done as mayor of the city.”
Asked Sunday about his remarks to Ms. Doolittle, Mr. MacIntyre told The Globe he sent the messages with the intention of deterring the journalist from contacting him. He said he believed that if he told Ms. Doolittle he only had nice things to say about the mayor that she would leave him alone. “It was one of those off-the-cuff remarks and I wish I’d never said it,” he said.
The mayor has denied that he played any role in the attack, which Mr. MacIntyre alleges was orchestrated by a 22-year-old prisoner who once played defensive tackle on the high school football team Mr. Ford used to coach. Dennis Morris, the mayor’s lawyer, has called the allegations “without fact or foundation.” None of the allegations in the lawsuit have been proven in court and statements of defence have not been filed.
Ms. Doolittle’s book, which explores Mr. Ford’s rise from an outsider on city council to Toronto’s 64th mayor, examines the subject – substance abuse – that has made Mr. Ford an internationally recognized politician and a regular feature on U.S. late night comedy shows.
The book includes dialogue from an alleged discussion between Mr. Ford’s wife, Renata Ford, and an associate, “John,” who the book says surreptitiously recorded the conversation.
According to the book, the conversation took place shortly after Mr. Ford was elected mayor. Mrs. Ford turned to John – not his real name – for advice on how to deal with the scrutiny her husband was bound to face. “He still thinks he’s going to party,” she is quoted as saying. “He thinks that he, oh, you know, ‘I’ll get off the pills, but I’m not giving up the blow.’ ”
Mr. Morris, who has served as an adviser and spokesman for the Fords since the mayor admitted to smoking crack cocaine, told The Globe Mrs. Ford denies such a conversation ever took place.
“At the end of the day, you have to appreciate the public will look at it and say, ‘Oh, okay, here’s another allegation unfounded,’” Mr. Morris said. “They’ll put the weight to it that it deserves.”