Johnny Depp Trial: Amber Heard expected to testify this week
FALLS CHURCH, Va. - Actress Amber Heard is expected to testify this week in Johnny Depp's defamation trial that continues in a Fairfax County, Virginia courtroom just days after she abruptly fired her PR team. Heard is expected on the stand to respond as the first witness in the defense's case.
Heard was reportedly upset over negative headlines and fired marketing agency Precision Strategies on Thursday in favor of Shane Communications, according to an online report by the New York Post.
Last week, a forensic psychologist hired by Depp's legal team testified that Heard, his ex-wife, suffers from borderline and histrionic personality disorder.
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The psychologist, Shannon Curry, took the stand Tuesday saying she reached her diagnosis during 12 hours of interviews with Heard and after a review of her mental-health records. Curry also testified that Heard does not suffer post-traumatic stress disorder from her relationship with Depp. On cross-examination, Heard's lawyers questioned Curry for potential bias.
Also last week, jurors heard testimony from Tara Roberts, the woman who managed Depp's private island in the Bahamas who testified that she never saw Heard with any kind of bruises.
In addition, a Los Angeles police officer Melissa Saenz who testified about her visit to Depp's penthouses just days before Heard filed for divorce and sought a restraining order. Saenz testified that Heard had been crying but she saw no evidence of an injury.
Depp's cross-examination concluded last Monday after four days on the witness stand.
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During his time on the stand, Depp denied ever hitting Heard and accused her of striking him. Depp said Heard threw liquor bottles and paint cans at him during arguments the two had during their relationship. He also denied cutting off his own finger during a fight with Heard, claiming she severed it when she threw a vodka bottle at him.
Jurors heard audio clips of Depp berating his then-wife with vulgarities. In other clips, Heard seemingly taunted Depp, suggesting he wouldn't be believed if he were to accuse her of abuse. Jurors were also shown dozens of text messages from Depp to friends regarding drinking, drug use and interactions with Heard.
Throughout the cross-examination, Heard's lawyers focused on Depp's drinking, drug use and heated interactions with her during their relationship. Depp expressed disapproval and displeasure with many of the questions asked during his four days on the stand.
The libel lawsuit was filed by Depp against Heard over an op-ed piece she wrote in The Washington Post in 2018 in which Heard refers to herself as a "public figure representing domestic abuse." The Post article doesn't mention Depp by name, but he says it clearly refers to her allegation that she suffered physical abuse at his hands. Depp denies the allegation.
The trial opened April 11, and since its start, Depp has testified regarding his past drug use, has discussed suffering a mental breakdown and talked about the disturbing details surrounding his relationship with Heard. Heard's attorneys have highlighted text messages Depp sent to friends recounting alcohol and drug use and have shown photos that showed cocaine and other drugs they say belonged to the actor.
During the trial, Heard's legal team has accused Depp of physically and sexually assaulting her on multiple occasions -- before and during their brief marriage. Depp said Heard's allegations of his substance abuse have been "grossly embellished" and that he was never out of control during that time period. The two met in 2009, got married in 2015 and Heard filed for divorce a year later.
Earlier in the trial, Depp's older sister, Christi Dembrowski, faced a barrage of questions from Heard's lawyers about Depp's alcohol and drug use.
Isaac Baruch, a longtime friend and next-door neighbor of Depp also testified that Amber Heard told him Depp had hit her but he never saw evidence of abuse on her face.
A former personal assistant to Amber Heard, Kate James, testified in a video deposition that was played in court last week said she never saw the actress suffer any physical abuse at the hands of her then-husband but did say Heard once spit in her face when she asked for a higher salary.
Lawyers also presented a video deposition of Laurel Anderson, a couple's therapist who worked with Heard and Depp in 2015 who said both suffered childhood abuse. As a couple, they were engaged in "mutual abuse," Anderson testified.
The Associated Press contributed to this report