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Depp, 58, is suing Heard, 35, for $50 million over an op-ed the “Aquaman” actress wrote for the Washington Post alleging she was the victim of domestic abuse. Heard never identified Depp directly in the essay, but Depp’s attorneys her allegations have negatively impacted Depp’s career and relationship with his family.
Depp described a “trying” six-year relationship with his ex-wife, whom he was married to between 2015 and 2017.
US actor Johnny Depp testifies during his defamation trial in the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, on April 19, 2022. ( JIM WATSON / POOL / AFP)
“About six years ago, Ms. Heard … brought these disturbing criminal acts against me that were not based in any species of truth,” Depp said, wearing his hair pulled back in a ponytail. “It was a complete shock. It just didn’t need to go in that direction.”
Depp continued to assert that he has never hit a woman and pushed back against allegations of a substance abuse problem — both details the defense has used in their arguments against Depp.
“It has been six years of trying times,” Depp testified. “It’s very strange when one day you’re a Cinderella, so to speak, then in 0.6 seconds, you’re Quasimodo. I didn’t deserve that, nor did my children, nor did the people who believed in me all these years.”
Attorney Elaine Bredehoft (L) and US actress Amber Heard look on during a trial in the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, on April 19, 2022. ( JIM WATSON / POOL / AFP)
The “Pirates of the Caribbean” star said it’s hard for him to air the intimate details of his life in public but necessary, saying he is “obsessed with the truth.”
In the beginning of their relationship, Depp said, Heard seemed “too good to be true.”
“She was attentive, she was loving, she was smart, she was kind, she was funny, she was understanding. We had many things in common,” he said, adding, “It was amazing.”
Heard would apparently sit him down on the couch when he walked in the door from work, give him a glass of wine and take off his boots.
US actor Johnny Depp testifies during his defamation trial in the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, on April 19, 2022. (JIM WATSON / POOL / AFP)
“I’ve never experienced anything like that in my life,” he recalled. But within a year and a half, he said, “she had become another person.”
Both parties have accused each other of abuse, though Heard has yet to take the stand herself.
Photo evidence presented by Depp’s attorneys Tuesday also show brushing on the actor. Security guard Sean Bett testified Monday afternoon that he had taken photos of Depp after Heard allegedly assaulted him on more than one occasion, leaving scratches and bruises on his face.
He told the jury that he had insisted on taking the photos “as evidence in case Ms. Heard tried to make allegations against Depp.” He also testified that it’s possible Heard could have had bruises on herself even if he did not personally see it.
Sean Bett testified Monday afternoon that he had taken photos of Depp after Heard allegedly assaulted him on more than one occasion, leaving scratches and bruises on his face. (Fox News)
Heard attorney Benjamin Rottenborn said last week that the actress will take the stand later on in the trial and detail the “graphic and horrifying terms” of her marriage with Depp. He mentioned one instance of alleged abuse in which Depp “kicked” Heard in the back on a private jet, calling the actor an “obsessed husband hellbent on revenge.”
The attorney also told the jury: “You’re going to see who the real Johnny Depp is — behind the fame, behind the pirate costumes. Because Johnny Depp brought this case, all of this is going to come out.”
Heard attorney Elaine Bredehoft also previewed graphic abuse allegations against Depp during her opening statements last week. Bredehoft described various allegations of abuse beginning in 2015 and ending before their marriage was terminated in 2017 that involved the actor allegedly “kicking,” “punching,” and throwing objects at Heard. The attorney also described Depp as “delusional” and “paranoid,” claiming that he would drink and take drugs before allegedly “assaulting” Heard on various occasions.
She said video and photo evidence of the alleged abuse will be shown to the jury over the course of the trial.
Heard’s legal team is also arguing that Heard’s decision to publish an op-ed in the Washington Post describing herself as a victim of abuse, without naming Depp, was within her rights under the First Amendment.