Amber Heard, who is the defendant in the defamation case filed by her ex-husband Johnny Depp, said the latter abused her verbally and sexually. Her statement came as part of her testimony on Wednesday, in the ongoing trial.
Recounting an incident from 2013, Heard said that Depp did a “cavity search” on her against her will after accusing her of hiding his cocaine. Heard testified that Depp had ripped off her dress and underwear, and penetrated her with his fingers.
Heard’s testimony came on day 14 of the trial in the defamation case filed by Depp over a 2018 op-ed piece that Heard wrote in The Washington Post about her experiences as a domestic abuse survivor.
The ongoing legal battle between Depp and Heard began when the latter filed for divorce in 2016 accusing Depp of domestic abuse. While the duo had reached a settlement on their divorce in 2017, Heard subsequently wrote the op-ed piece, which Depp claims defamed him and resulted in him losing several projects, including Pirates of the Caribbean.
Dr Dawn Hughes, a forensic psychologist who testified ahead of Heard, confirmed that the latter had been sexually assaulted by Depp, and added that she suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) as a result of being subjected to abuse at the hands of Depp.
Depp’s team continued to deny the allegations, and the actor claimed last week that he was a victim of domestic abuse.
Heard’s testimony on Wednesday came after Judge Penney Azcarate dismissed the strike motion from Heard’s team, on Tuesday, and allowed the trial to continue.
Heard recounted how she and Depp had met, in 2011, while filming Rum Diary. They started dating while on the press tour for the film.
She added that even though Depp had a tendency of disappearing on her and resurfacing days later, it wasn’t until he first hit her, that she realised that she needed to leave.
“I will never forget it. It changed my life,” Heard said as she recounted the incident from 2012.
Heard said that they were having a conversation at Depp’s place, when she asked him about a tattoo on his arm, that read, “Wino,” and laughed over it.
“I just laughed because I thought he was joking. And he slapped me across the face,” she said, and added, “And I laughed. I laughed because I didn’t know what else to do. I thought this must be a joke. I didn’t know what was going on. I just stared at him.”
Heard also mentioned that Depp was drinking and she believed that he was also high on cocaine, at the time of the incident.
“I, as a woman, had never been hit like that,” she said.
When she was about to leave, she found Depp crying and apologising, Heard added. He held her hand, and said, “I thought I put the monster away.”
Although Heard left at the time, the two reconciled shortly thereafter. “I believed there was a line he’d never cross again and that was it,” she said.
But things got worse, according to Heard, when Depp went back to drinking and accused her of having affairs with her friends and acquaintances. She also said Depp passed comments on her dressing and called her vile names.
Heard will continue with her testimony on Thursday, at the Fairfax County Courthouse in Virginia.