Actor Amber Heard’s cross-examination started late Monday with Johnny Depp’s legal team trying to establish that he, not Heard, was the victim of abuse.
Depp’s attorney started the cross by replaying an audio recording in which Heard can be heard telling Depp, “Tell them, I, Johnny Depp, I’m a victim of domestic abuse... and see how many people believe or side with you.” His lawyer then questioned Heard’s allegations that Depp physically abused her.
“You're here in this courtroom because Johnny Depp finally told the world that he is a victim of domestic violence,” his lawyer said, adding that Heard didn’t think people would believe Depp because he is a man.
Heard responded, “With all due respect, I wasn't saying it was because he was a man; I said it because he was a man who beat me up for five years.”
Depp’s lawyer proceeded to revisit incidents from the early days of the former couple’s relationship, including moments in 2013 when Heard said Depp allegedly hit her. Depp is known for wearing rings, and his lawyer repeatedly asked Heard whether Depp had hit her with rings on. The attorney then showed pictures from days following the alleged incidents, where there was no sign of injury.
“You have no visible injuries to your face, do you?” the lawyer asked.
“None that you can see,” Heard said.
“Even though Mr. Depp ‘whacked you in the face so hard that your nose bled?’” the lawyer asked.
“He did,” Heard said.
The lawyer responded, “While wearing chunky big rings, right?”
“That’s correct,” Heard said.
Heard repeatedly told the jury she covered her injuries with makeup and treated all swelling with ice. “You should see what it looked like underneath the makeup,” Heard said of one photo.
The legal team also questioned Heard about alleged incidents where there were no medical records available to confirm what she had told the jury, including after the alleged rape and physical assault in Australia in 2015. Heard alleges that Depp threw glass at her while she was cornered and later penetrated her with a bottle, among other allegations of abuse. Heard said that at the time she didn’t tell anyone of the rape. She also said that there were times when she opted not to get medical treatment because she didn’t need it.
Depp seemingly hasn’t glanced up at Heard at all while she is on the stand—something his lawyer brought up, saying that years ago Depp promised Heard she’d never see his eyes again.
Heard’s pledge to donate the $7 million she got from her divorce settlement with Depp was also questioned during the cross. Heard maintains she committed that money to two charities because she didn’t want anything from Depp. She said she’s been unable to fulfill the pledge because Depp is suing her, something his lawyer disputed.
Depp’s lawyer made several claims, including that Heard “wanted Mr. Depp’s money” and “praise for donating the money.” Heard denied both.
“You wanted good press… You wanted to seem altruistic, publicly,” she said. “You wanted to remind everyone of your claims of domestic violence against Mr. Depp.”
“No, I wanted to move on with my life,” Heard said.
“You wanted to be seen as a noble victim of domestic assault,” the lawyer said.
“I have never, never wanted to be seen as a victim nor have I ever called myself one,” Heard said.
The cross-examination started late Monday after Heard wrapped up her testimony that detailed several allegations of sexual, physical, and verbal abuse throughout Heard and Depp’s relationship, as well as Depp’s substance abuse and jealousy. The jury was shown several images, some never seen before, of Heard with visible swelling and redness that were taken after their final fight before she filed for divorce. She told the jury Depp had thrown a phone at her face and she filed for divorce two days later.
Heard also told the jury about how she filed for divorce and requested a restraining order after the altercation in May 2016. She also said she never intended to publicize her allegations because she didn’t want to harm Depp.
When asked why Heard ultimately filed for divorce from Depp, Heard said, “Because I knew if I didn't I’d likely literally not even survive… I lived through this and I narrowly survived it.”
Depp launched a $50 million defamation suit against Heard in response to a 2018 Washington Post op-ed that Heard wrote about her experiences with domestic assault. The piece didn’t name Depp, but the Oscar-nominated actor maintains it’s “plainly” about him and that it cost him his career. Heard is counter-suing Depp for $100 million in damages.
On Monday, Heard said that she has also been offered fewer roles and promotional jobs since Depp started alleging she abused him.
Both Heard and Depp allege that the other was abusive while maintaining their own innocence.
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