TORONTO – The mystery of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford's whereabouts deepened Tuesday, following reports that Ford did not enter the United States via Chicago last week, as expected.
His lawyer said last week that the mayor had left Toronto for rehab after another video surfaced that appeared to show Ford smoking a crack pipe late last month. The lawyer, Dennis Morris, said Ford's plane was headed for Chicago.
But Roy Norton, the Consul General of Canada in Chicago, told The Globe and Mail that Ford voluntarily withdrew his application to enter the U.S. when he landed and was "not denied entry, per se."
A spokesman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection didn't immediately return messages seeking comment. The last time Ford was in the United States was in early March, when he appeared on the "Jimmy Kimmel Live" television show in Los Angeles.
Morris and Doug Ford, Rob's brother, declined to discuss the Globe's report, but insisted Tuesday that the mayor is in rehab.
"The most important thing, everyone who is concerned if he's in rehab, the answer is yes. As for his whereabouts that's personal and that should stay with Rob," Doug Ford told The Associated Press.
Doug Ford said he has spoken with his brother since he entered the program, and he is doing well.
"He's feeling great actually. He's feeling good. He's bought into the program and he's getting the support he needs," Doug Ford said.
The scandal over Ford's crack use first exploded last May when news reports emerged of a first video showing him smoking the drug. After police said they had obtained that video, Ford admitted that he had smoked crack while in a "drunken stupor."
Although Ford has not abandoned his bid to seek a second term in October's elections, the revelation of a second crack video raised skepticism about his chances of prevailing. His decision to seek treatment comes months after he announced he was finished with alcohol -- only to be followed by a steady flow of reports of intoxicated behavior.
Toronto's City Council stripped Ford of most of his powers last year, and Deputy Mayor Norm Kelly is running the city.