In the civil lawsuit between Hollywood star Johnny Depp (58) and his ex-wife Amber Heard, a psychologist testified that she had discovered personality disorders in the 36-year-old. Forensic psychologist Shannon Curry, hired by Depp’s lawyers, stated on Tuesday (local time) that, in her estimation, Heard tends to have emotional instability and sudden outbursts of anger, which could also be accompanied by violence.
Depp’s lawyers hope the statement will support the actor’s claim, who described himself as a victim in the explosive relationship. In 2016, the actress filed for divorce after just 15 months of marriage. She accused the “Pirates of the Caribbean” star of domestic violence. In his civil lawsuit, Depp alleges that his ex-wife made false statements in a 2018 op-ed about domestic violence published by the Washington Post. This damaged his reputation. The actor is not mentioned by name in the article. Depp is suing for around 50 million dollars (a good 45 million euros) in damages for defamation.
Heard first moved to dismiss the lawsuit in 2019 and later filed a counterclaim against Depp, including for defamation. She is demanding $100 million in damages and a $350,000 fine. A judge dismissed some parts of the counterclaim but allowed others.
In the Fairfax County Court of Virginia, the psychologist said she reviewed health records and audio recordings, among other things, and met with the actress twice for testing. She also came to the conclusion that Heard did not suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder because of the relationship with the “Pirates of the Caribbean” star. “Ms. Heard did not have PTSD, and there was also fairly strong evidence that when asked about symptoms of PTSD, she significantly exaggerated them,” Curry said.
Lawyers question statements
According to media reports, however, Heard’s lawyers questioned the psychologist’s statements during cross-examination: she was biased because she met Depp and his lawyers at his house for dinner before she received the order. Curry therefore replied that this was part of the selection process. The testimony of a policewoman in a previously recorded video link was also shown in the courtroom on Tuesday. Melissa Saenz described how she was called to their Los Angeles penthouse after the couple had an argument in May 2016. She found Heard crying but found no signs of injury or damage to property in the home. Saenz testified that she did not see Heard as a victim of domestic violence. A few days after the incident, the actress told authorities that Depp had injured her.
The longtime administrator of Depp’s private island in the Bahamas also testified via video. She reportedly said she witnessed the couple’s argument there in late 2015. Heard himself is also said to testify in the multi-week process. Depp had previously sworn on the witness stand that he never hit Heard. On Monday he had completed his four-day statements. In cross-examination with his ex-wife’s lawyers, he was confronted with videos, photos and audio recordings, some of which were shocking, with which Heard’s lawyers wanted to paint a picture of Depp as an addict with violent failures. In a featured video, recorded by Heard, he thrashes angrily in a kitchen in the morning, drinks a tall glass of wine and yells that he’s going to show her what “crazy” is. On cross-examination, Depp said he attacked “some kitchen cabinets” but not Heard. The day before, he had described alleged violent outbursts by the “Aquaman” actress in the defamation process. During an argument in 2015, she threw a vodka bottle at him. Part of his middle finger was severed. Heard has denied this allegation in the past.