Connor Simpson is a former staff writer for The Wire. His work has appeared in Business Insider and City Lab.
A reporter compared his outburst to a cackle from the Joker.
Over the last week we've learned police have been investigating Toronto mayor Rob Ford since March -- before journalists, let alone the world, knew about the infamous (alleged!) crack video -- and occasionally using a spy plane. When asked about the investigation today, Ford just screamed about subways and laughed like a maniac.
Before a scrum of reporters at the mayor's office in Toronto, Ford was posed a question about the recently revealed police investigation he's apparently at the center of. His response? "Subways! Subways! SUBWAYS!" the mayor shouted over the avalanche of questions from reporters, before laughing like a super-villain. Ford is avoiding questions about "Project Brazen 2," the investigation into the mayor and his associates run by some of Toronto Police's best detectives. He'd rather talk about the subway project that will raise taxes ahead of his potential reelection.
The Toronto Star and the Toronto Sun revealed Monday evening the first major details of the extensive operation looking into the mayor and his friends. The investigation started after 'Sandro' Lisi, the mayor's alleged drug dealer who was arrested last week for trafficking marijuana, attempted to retrieve the mayor's stolen cellphone by allegedly offering an unknown quantity of weed in exchange for the phone's safe return. The phone was eventually retrieved:
As part of the Star’s ongoing investigation, reporters learned several months ago the story of Ford’s missing cellular phone — an incident that panicked the mayor and some of his staff. The phone was taken from the mayor in the latter part of March and was apparently retrieved. The Star does not know what was on the phone that would cause concern or if it was used to make any telephone calls while it was in someone else’s possession.
The investigation is being run by the homicide division's Det. Sgt. Gary Giroux "because of his expertise in difficult cases," according to the Star. That Toronto police are investigating the mayor wasn't news in the city Tuesday morning. Revealed late last week, Toronto residents already had an idea of the ridiculous efforts Toronto police were using to follow the mayor. The Star previously reported police contracted a Cessna airplane to track Ford's movements over the summer. But the news that Toronto police were looking at the mayor before journalists had seen and reported the alleged crack tape was a big development.
But the SUBWAY! screaming just put the whole Ford scandal over the top for some observers. One popular Toronto city hall reporter even compared him to the Joker:
Asked whether he was under investigation, Rob Ford shouted "Subways! Subways! SUBWAYS!" And then laughed like the Joker.— Edward Keenan (@thekeenanwire) October 8, 2013
That wasn't a joke. Although Joker part is my own interpretation. Another journo said, "that sounded evil."— Edward Keenan (@thekeenanwire) October 8, 2013
If Ford starts wearing makeup and dancing around the Art Gallery of Ontario, maybe consider running in the other direction.
This post originally appeared on The Atlantic Wire.