A jury in Virginia decided Wednesday that Amber Heard defamed ex-husband Johnny Depp. And, in a countering suit, the jury also concluded that Depp’s lawyer defamed Heard when he called her domestic abuse allegations a hoax.
It also seemed like a push, except the money award favored Johnny Depp, who was hoping to resurrect his acting career after the case concluded. Depp turns 59 next week. The jury awarded Depp $15 million in damages. Heard received $2 million. The jury deliberated for 12 hours scattered across parts of three days.
The televised trial caught the world’s attention, as fans of Depp’s turned up enmasse at the courthouse while TV news programming devoted segments to the case. Johnny Depp filed the lawsuit in December, 2018. Reporters who covered the trial in person said that Depp fans camped out to get tickets for the next day’s court action. Others who couldn’t find a seat stayed outside to boo Heard.
He issued a statement via Instagram.
Johnny Depp Filed for Defamation Over 2018 Op-ed In Washington Posr
Johnny Depp sued Heard for libel in Fairfax County Circuit Court over a December 2018. That was after Heard wrote a column or the the Washington Post. And in the column, she described herself as “a public figure representing domestic abuse.” However, she never named Depp in the column, but the star’s lawyers still claimed defamation. The two were only married for two years. They wed in 2015, but by May, 2016, Heard filed for divorce. It became official in 2017. She wrote the column about a year after their divorce became final.
Once the verdict was announced, Heard also issued a statement about what she described as disappointing results.
“The disappointment I feel today is beyond words,” she said.”I’m heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence, and sway of my ex-husband.”
She said the verdict “sets back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously.”
Depp sued Heard for $50 million. Heard countersued for $100 million. The jury found both sides guilty of defamation. But here’s how they came up with the money totals. The jury gave Depp $10 million for compensatory damages. The jury then awarded $5 million in punitive damages. And the jury decided to give Heard $2 million in compensatory damages. There was no money awarded for punitive damages.