Dennis Morris comments on allegation that Mayor Rob Ford ordered a jailhouse beating of sister's ex-boyfriend
A Toronto man who previously threatened Mayor Rob Ford has filed a $1-million lawsuit relating to a jailhouse assault, which names the mayor, an assistant football coach, a football player and the Ontario’s Ministry of Correctional Services as defendants.
Scott MacIntyre, the man who has filed the statement of claim, is the former partner of Ford’s sister.
He claims that the mayor and his football acquaintances planned the assault, while also claiming that the ministry is also liable for not preventing it.
None of the allegations in the lawsuit’s statement of claim have been proven in court and the mayor’s lawyer, Dennis Morris, said the allegations are "without factual foundation."
Morris said Wednesday that it is "very irresponsible and spurious" to suggest Ford was involved.
All defendants have 20 days to respond to the statement of claim.
In January of 2012, MacIntyre was charged — and later convicted — after making threats against Ford at the mayor’s home.
MacIntyre, in his statement of claim, says that before he left the mayor’s house, he indicated that "Ford should be careful about how he treated the plaintiff because the plaintiff knew things about Ford and his family which had not been made public."
The statement of claim says that MacIntyre subsequently wrote a letter to the mayor’s sister a few days after he was taken into custody, which the mayor understood "to be a threat by the plaintiff to disclose Ford’s drug and alcohol abuse and association with criminals."
'Ford became highly agitated'
The statement of claim goes on to say that "Ford became highly agitated that the plaintiff might disclose Ford’s unsavoury activities" and allegedly conspired with Payman Aboodowleh, an assistant coach of the mayor’s high school football team, to "send a firm message to the plaintiff to prevent him from doing so."
Part of these alleged discussions were recorded in a video, the statement of claim says. MacIntyre's lawyer says the video is the same one made public in November. At one point during that video, an agitated Ford can be heard talking about wanting "to kill" someone.
The statement of claims alleges that Ford and Aboodowleh "agreed that one or both of them" should reach out to two football players who were in custody at the Metro West Detention Centre where MacIntyre was also being held.
According to the statement of claim, MacIntyre began to receive threats and was repeatedly told to keep his mouth shut or suffer consequences. The threats came from the two football players "and through other inmates."
According to MacIntyre, he received threats both before and after he wrote the letter to Ford’s sister, an act for which he was put into segregation for two weeks.
His statement of claim also says that when he was let out of segregation, he was put in a part of the jail where inmates who are younger and often "more prone to violent and disruptive behaviour" are typically kept.
MacIntyre says he appealed to jail staff to put him back into segregation because of the threats, which they did. But when he was released from segregation, he was back in the part of the jail he had been in before.
The statement of claim alleges that a jail staff member had written instructions that MacIntyre was not to be put in the part of the facility where older and calmer inmates were kept.
MacIntyre was later attacked while inside the Metro West Detention Centre on March 22, 2012.
According to his statement of claim, the attack occurred near a shower and resulted in MacIntyre’s left tibia and fibula being "severely fractured." He also suffered "facial lacerations and severe dental damage."
A long recovery
MacIntyre had to undergo surgery and spent months recovering from his injuries, according to the statement of claim.
When MacIntyre was sentenced on June 13, 2012, "the court correctly inferred that he had been attacked because he had been a bother to Ford and his family," the statement of claim says.
The document also alleges that Ford, Aboodowleh and one of the football players, Aedan Petros, conspired together and with others "to arrange for the attack on the plaintiff and to cause him serious harm."
The lawsuit is seeking $1 million in general and special damages from each of the defendants, as well as additional aggravated, punitive and penal damages from them.
Ford, 44, was elected as the mayor of Toronto in 2010. He has registered to run for re-election this fall.
His three-plus years at the helm of the city government have been controversial, as Ford has consistently made headlines both for his work at Toronto City Hall and for his life outside of it.
In May of last year, reports emerged that someone had been offering to sell a video that showed Ford using crack.
The drug-related scandal involving the mayor made headlines around the world and made Ford a frequent topic of conversation on late-night talk shows.
Toronto City Council voted to strip the mayor of some of his powers in the wake of his admissions in November, transferring some of his powers to Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly.
Ford eventually said he was giving up drinking, though earlier this month, he admitted to having been drinking on a night that a bizarre video was filmed, which showed him ranting and speaking in Jamaican patois.