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Tuesday, May 17, 2022 – In continuation of the $50m defamation lawsuit, Actress, Amber Heard has claimed she feared her ex-husband Johnny Depp would accidentally kill her during an alleged assault during their honeymoon.
Testifying in the defamation case Depp brought against her, Ms Heard, 36, painted a picture Depp as an abuser addicted to drugs and plagued with jealousy and self-harm.
Depp is suing Ms Heard for $50m (£40m) over an article in which she claimed she was the victim of domestic violence.
The piece did not name Depp but his attorneys, however, have said that the article “incalculably” damaged his reputation and career. She has countersued him for $100m.
The case being tried in Virginia has resumed for a fifth week, and in previous court hearings Depp had told his side of the story while Heard had begun some of her testimony.
In court on Monday, May 16, Heard tearfully told jurors that she believed she’d likely “not survive” if she had remained married to Mr Depp, 58.
“I was so scared that it was going to end really badly for me,” she said. “I really didn’t want to leave him. I loved him so much.”
She alleged that he attacked her while aboard the Orient Express train in Asia after their February 2015 wedding, claiming that he struck her and held her by the neck while in their sleeper compartment.
“He was squeezing my neck against the railway car for what felt like a very long time,” she said.
She said she recalled thinking he could “kill me”.
“I remember being scared that he wouldn’t mean to do it,” she said.
In another instance, Ms Heard described a “week of hell” after Depp allegedly became jealous because she was offered a role with James Franco. She claimed he punched her and threw her into furniture.
While Ms Heard said that the marriage was “at times, very loving”, it deteriorated over time to a point in which tension and violence became “almost normal”. They divorced in 2017, after two years.
She also claimed that Depp would frequently self-harm during their arguments.
“In fights he often would cut his arms or hold his knife to his chest or draw blood, superficially at first,” she said. “He also put cigarettes out on himself.”
Attorney Camille Vasquez, Depp’s lawyer questioned the witness over her prior testimony, questioning why there were so few photos and medical records to back up claims of physical injuries from her alleged beatings.
Heard countered that she didn’t take photos or videos of the beating because she was embarrassed to be a victim of abuse and “other than my therapist”, she relied on makeup to cover bruises and ice to reduce swelling.
In a heated back-and forth, Ms Vasquez forced Ms Heard to acknowledge that she had “pledged” to donate the entirety of her $7m divorce settlement with Depp to charity but was yet to make any donation.
She also noted that her client had not once looked Ms Heard in the eye over the course of the trial. “He can’t,” Ms Heard responded.
In his own testimony earlier in the trial, Mr Depp said that he never struck Ms Heard and told jurors that she had a “need” for conflict and violence.
On Monday, jurors heard a number of audio clips of the former couple arguing. In one clip which Heard can be heard saying she hit Mr Depp.
“I was hitting you. I was not punching you,” she can be heard saying. “You’re not punched.”
According to Ms Heard, she sometimes “reactively” hit Mr Depp and claimed that she was referring to the “disparity” of their strength.