Video: Rob Ford apologizes for sexually explicit remarks and says he is seeking help. Jackson Proskow reports.
TORONTO – Toronto Mayor Rob Ford apologized for his graphic remarks made Thursday morning when he denied reports he made lewd comments to a female aide last year.
“I want to apologize for my graphic remarks this morning,” he said during a press conference at city hall. “Today, I acted on complete impulses.”
Ford denied allegations he verbally abused now-former staffer Olivia Gondek. The new unredacted police documents from a former staffer said the mayor told her he would “eat her out.”
Ford also said the allegations are “100 per cent” lies and also made reference to help he is getting for his substance abuse issues.
“I am receiving professional support and seeking advice from people with expertise.”
This comes several hours after Ford threatened to sue former staffers and a bar employee after new allegations were released regarding the Toronto mayor’s behaviour.
WATCH: If Mayor Rob Ford sues his former staffers, is he likely to win? Sean Mallen reports.
According to newly unredacted information from documents related to Toronto Police’s investigation into Ford and his friend Sandro Lisi, the mayor’s aides and Bier Markt employee told police they saw him doing drugs, drunk in public, verbally abusing staffers and partying with women believed to be prostitutes.
Isaac Ransom, George Christopoulos and Mark Towhey, all former staffers, were named in the documents during interviews with police.
Nothing in the documents has been proven in court. The mayor hasn’t been charged with anything.
VIDEO: Mayor Rob Ford speaks to the media regarding new allegations in court documents. Warning: Explicit language used, discretion is advised.
Mayor Ford, during a Thursday morning scrum with the media, said he also plans to take legal action against a Bier Markt waiter who accused him of “doing lines” of cocaine.
Ford also denied allegations he verbally abused now-former staffer Olivia Gondek. The documents state that Ransom said the mayor told her he would “eat her out.”
“I have more than enough to eat at home,” said Ford, who is married with two young children.
The incident allegedly occurred on St. Patrick’s Day 2012, the same night as the mayor’s drunken escapade at city hall.
The mayor is also threatening legal action against staff members for suggesting at least one of his female companions was a prostitute.
“I don’t appreciate people calling Alana a prostitute,” said Ford. “I’ve never had a prostitute here, I’m very happily married at home. This is very disturbing against my wife.”
Legal experts say Ford has little or no grounds for a defamation lawsuit because his former staffers would have a “complete defence of privilege.”
“Courts have recognized that there is a benefit to the community in allowing people to provide information to police without fear of facing legal consequences,” said media lawyer Doug Richardson.
“Communications to police will be protected and defensible against a defamation lawsuit unless it can be shown that the person making the statements was intentionally dishonest.”
Meanwhile, councillor Janet Davis reacted in disgust as she heard the mayor’s words while driving to city hall in the morning.
“I had the radio on and I heard our mayor make statements that I found repugnant, distasteful, hateful, misogynist, about a former staff person and his wife,” she said at council. “I have never heard of such disgraceful language and statements made in the public realm by an elected official ever.”
Ford then rose to speak and quickly replied back.
“If you’re offended, I’m not apologizing because put yourself in my shoes if someone said that about your husband or your wife,” he said.