Johnny Depp’s lawyer presses Amber Heard over photos and donation as cross-examination begins

Johnny Depp’s lawyer presses Amber Heard over photos and donation as cross-examination begins

Editor’s Note: Some testimonials contain graphic language and descriptions of sexual and physical assaults.

Jurors in Johnny Depp’s libel trial against his ex-wife, Amber Heard, saw photos of her with red marks and swelling on her face on Monday after their last fight before their divorce, and heard testimony about her expertise in concealing bruises with makeup.

Heard concluded her direct testimony in a Virginia courtroom with a third day focused on the final months of her marriage to Depp. His lawyers began their cross-examination later in the afternoon.

Amber Heard testifies in trial
Amber Heard testifies in the defamation case filed against her by Johnny Depp, at the Fairfax County Courthouse in Fairfax, Va., Monday, May 16, 2022.

Steve Helber/AP


The trial is now in its fifth week, and jurors have seen several photos of Heard throughout the trial that purport to document the abuse she said she suffered during her relationship with Depp.

Several of the photos shown on Monday, however, had not previously been seen by the jury and showed redness and swelling much more clearly than previous photos.

Heard said the marks came when Depp threw a phone in his face.

Depp heard the trial
Actor Amber Heard testifies in the courtroom of the Fairfax County Courthouse in Fairfax, Va., Monday, May 16, 2022. Actor Johnny Depp sued his ex-wife Amber Heard for defamation in court of the Fairfax County Circuit after writing an editorial article in The Washington Post in 2018 referring to herself as a “public figure representing domestic violence.”

Steve Helber/AP


The confrontation in May 2016 prompted Heard to file for divorce two days later. Days later, she was granted a temporary restraining order after a courthouse hearing and was widely photographed leaving the courthouse with a bright red mark on her right cheek.

The final fight was a key point in the couple’s ongoing dispute. Depp is suing Heard in Fairfax County Circuit Court for defamation over a December 2018 op-ed she wrote in The Washington Post describing herself as “a public figure representing domestic violence.” His lawyers say he was defamed by the article even though he never mentioned his name.

Depp says he never hit Heard and that she is cooking up allegations that she was abused. Earlier in the trial, jurors heard from officers who responded to emergency calls during that final fight who said Heard’s face was red from crying but they saw no visible bruises. . Witnesses also said they did not see any bruises on Heard’s face in the days immediately following the fight.

Heard, in her testimony Monday, said she was uncooperative with officers who responded to the couple’s penthouse and said her face-to-face interactions with officers were very limited.

She also discussed her makeup routine, using a color correction wheel she called her “bruise kit” to cover the marks on her face. She said she had learned over the years to use green tints on the first day of a bruise to cover redness and to switch more to orange tints when the bruise turned blue and purple.

“I’m not going to walk around LA with bruises on my face,” she said.

In cross-examination, Depp’s attorney, Camille Vasquez, questioned Heard about several photos of her that appeared to show no bruising, even though they were taken days after incidents of alleged abuse. Heard said she used makeup to cover bruises and ice to reduce swelling.

“You should see what it looked like under the makeup,” she said.

Vasquez also asked Heard about his $7 million divorce settlement with Depp. Heard has pledged to donate the full amount to charity, but has so far only donated a portion. She testified that she had yet to fulfill her promise because Depp sued her for $50 million. But on cross-examination, she admitted she received the full $7 million from Depp months before he filed the lawsuit.

Depp heard the trial
Actor Johnny Depp looks toward the courtroom gallery as they pause in the courtroom at the Fairfax County Courthouse in Fairfax, Va., Monday, May 16, 2022. Depp has sued his ex-wife Amber Heard for defamation in Fairfax County Circuit Court after she wrote an opinion piece in The Washington Post in 2018 referring to herself as a “public figure representing domestic violence”.

Steve Helber/AP


In her direct testimony, Heard said she did not want to publicly expose Depp as an abuser in her legal proceedings, but had to go to the courthouse to testify in order to get the restraining order, and she has was surprised when she left the courthouse surrounded by paparazzi.

“I just wanted to change my locks,” she explained why she went to court to get the restraining order. “I just wanted to get a good night’s sleep.”

During Monday’s testimony, Heard also strongly denied an accusation by Depp that she left human feces in the couple’s bed after a fight. Heard said it was the couple’s cup of tea, the Yorkshire terrier, that ruined the bed and had a history of intestinal issues since accidentally ingesting Depp’s marijuana.

“Absolutely not,” she said of the alleged poop prank. “I don’t think it’s funny. I don’t know what a grown woman does. I wasn’t in the mood for pranks.”

Heard, however, said Depp became obsessed with the idea that someone had pooped in his bed. She said that was all he wanted to talk about in that last fight on May 21, 2016, even though Depp’s mother had just died and the pair hadn’t spoken in a month.

The poo allegation is one of many that Depp’s online fans have particularly latched onto in their criticism of Heard on social media.

Heard also spoke about the editorial itself, saying that staffers from the American Civil Liberties Union — for whom she started working as an ambassador — penned the first draft. She said she was happy to lend her voice to the domestic violence debate and had no intention of referencing Depp.

“It’s not about Johnny,” she said. “The only one who thought it was about Johnny was Johnny. It was about me and my life after Johnny.”

Heard concluded her testimony by saying that the accusations she receives daily from Depp supporters that she is lying about abuse is “torture”.

“I want to get on with my life,” she said. “I want Johnny to move on. I want him to leave me alone.”

Heard will resume testimony at 9 a.m. ET on Tuesday.

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