Johnny Depp and Amber Heard: Trial Updates

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Actor Johnny Depp walks into the courtroom after a break at the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, U.S., May 16, 2022. Steve Helber/Pool via REUTERS

A month ago, I wrote about the current legal battle between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard, something that is still a trending and ongoing topic; now that it has been a few weeks, it is time to summarise an update for you all who may or may not have kept up with what is going on. From the 12th of April onwards, Johnny Depp and Amber Heard have been facing each other in court over claims of abuse. Each trial is available for the public to watch, causing an uproar of opinions circulating the internet – read on for full details.

At the beginning of this defamation trial, a claim that had never been made publicly before were referenced in the opening statements. Johnny Depp is reported to be suing Amber Heard “over an op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post in which she claimed she was a survivor of domestic abuse”. The pair got married in 2015 and split in 2016, and they are now together to battle each other at the Fairfax County Courthouse in Virginia.

US actress Amber Heard departs from the stand in the courtroom at the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, on May 17, 2022. – US actor Johnny Depp is suing ex-wife Amber Heard for libel after she wrote an op-ed piece in The Washington Post in 2018 referring to herself as a public figure representing domestic abuse. (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI / POOL / AFP) (Photo by BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

When the trial began, Ben Chew and Camille Vasquez, who are Johnny Depp’s lawyers, were the first to speak and addressed Amber Heard’s sexual assault claims right away. In the recent days, it has been Amber Heard’s turn for a testimony, resulting in a lot of details and stories compared to the trial from 2019, which was not on camera as this one is.

Here is day 17 and 18 of the court trial (scroll down for other days):

Here is the ongoing day 19 of the defamation trial:

Witnesses so far have included “Raquel Pennington, a friend of Heard’s at the time of her relationship with Depp; Pennington’s ex, Josh Drew; Whitney Henrique, Heard’s sister; Elizabeth Marz, a former acquittance of Heard’s; Melanie Inglessis, Heard’s former makeup artist; and Kristina Sexton, Heard’s former acting coach”.

According to Kristina Sexton, who served as Amber Heard’s acting coach from 2010 to 2017, she saw the ex-couple’s relationship go from “passionate” to “sad”. She said that she would see Amber Heard less and less and that the actress would arrive late to the coaching sessions in tears. She said, “I would say the last year they were together, probably 80 to 90 percent of our sessions began with her crying and that would be increasing as it went on.” She commented saying that Johnny Depp was controlling of Amber Heard’s work. 

Further to this, the makeup artist Melanie Inglessis explained during the trial that she had covered Amber Heard’s face injuries before an appearance on The Late Late Show With James Corden in December 2015. She confirmed that she saw the injuries on Amber’s face while working with her that day, “consistent with photographs from that time submitted into evidence”. When questioned by Johnny Depp’s lawyers, Melanie Inglessis confirmed that she did not witness Johnny Depp be violent toward Amber Heard.

During Johnny Depp’s testimony, he said, “Never did I myself reach the point of striking Ms. Heard in any way nor have I ever struck any woman in my life.” Both Heard and Depp have accused each other of physical violence, and both have denied the other’s claims. 

Amber Heard’s own testimony ended on Tuesday the 17th of May. The trial is expected to last until next week, with closing arguments expected on the 27th of May 2022.