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Depp attorney spars with Heard, accuses actress of abuse

Heard wrapped up her testimony in the high-profile defamation case brought against her by her ex-husband, Johnny Depp.

FAIRFAX, Va. (CN) — A lawyer accused Amber Heard of assaulting her ex-husband, Johnny Depp, and not the other way around, during the ongoing defamation trial against her Tuesday.

In question after question Tuesday morning, Camille Vasquez, one of Depp's attorneys, sought to turn the tables on Heard's sworn testimony that Depp raped her. But in separate testimony, jurors also watched the video deposition of Heard's friend, who called the police after overhearing Depp threaten the actress.

This is the fifth week of the trial brought on by Depp’s charge that Heard defamed him with an op-ed in which she described herself as a public figure representing domestic abuse. The Washington Post published the piece in December 2018, just before the premiere of the movie, “Aquaman,” in which Heard starred. Days later, Depp lost his part in the "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise. Within months, he filed suit against Heard asking for $50 million in damages. She filed a counterclaim demanding $100 million.

Leading the cross-examination of Heard, Vasquez focused on an alleged violent episode that occurred in 2015 while Depp and Heard were in Australia for the filming of “Pirates of the Caribbean 5.” Heard testified that Depp, enraged, raped her with a bottle. Afterwards, she said she suffered vaginal bleeding and sustained cuts. But Heard didn't seek treatment and there wasn't a single medical record for her injuries, Vasquez charged.

Both Heard, 36, and Depp, 58, have accused one another of assault via liquor bottle. Depp says his finger was severed when Heard hurled a bottle at him.

“You’re the one who assaulted someone with a bottle in Australia, isn’t that right, Ms. Heard?” Vasquez asked.

“I didn’t assault Johnny with a bottle,” Heard responded. "I didn’t assault Johnny ever."

During testimony, Heard would often turn and look directly at the jurors. But Vasquez leaned into questions that pressed Heard on inconsistencies and curiosities in her testimony. For example, Heard had testified that Depp was violent early in the relationship — a period during which she gave Depp a knife as a present.

Heard also testified that Depp's "monster," his angry side, was associated with drug and alcohol abuse, and she was attempting to help him kick the habit. But the attorney pointed out that Heard and her friends were still also using drugs and alcohol.

The attorney also showed the jury photos of Heard with a bruised face after a violent altercation with Depp in May 2016. In two photos, the lighting is different. Heard explained that one photo was taken by vanity lights, which have a yellow hue, an explanation Vasquez didn't accept.

"Isn't it true that you just edited these photographs?" Vasquez said.

"No, I never edited a photograph," Heard responded.

"Didn't you just enhance the saturation for one of these photos to make your face look more red?" Vaquez pressed.

Heard maintained she didn't touch up the photos.

Vasquez also implied that the actress added an incendiary charge to her testimony about an argument that erupted after Heard's 30th birthday party. "You testified to a new detail about your 30th birthday for the first time in this courtroom, didn't you?" the attorney asked. "Sexual assault, no less."

She was referring to Heard's testimony that Depp grabbed her by the pubic area and pushed her down. Heard responded that she had previously presented this detail in a legal filing, but she had been unsure about the date when this occurred.

Later in the day, Heard's lawyers showed the jury a recorded deposition of iO Tillet Wright, who testified that Heard called him on May 21, the night that she and Depp had one of their final arguments.

Depp wanted to know if Wright or Heard defecated on his pillow, Wright recalled, referencing an incident that had occurred the month before, when feces was left on the actor's bed. Heard has testified that one of the couple's dogs had bowel issues, but Depp thought it was human feces. Wright laughed at the suggestion, not realizing that Depp was serious.

Wright heard the noise of a slap. Someone dropped the phone. Then Wright heard Depp screaming at Heard: "Oh, you think I hit you? You think I fucking hit you? What if I peel your fucking hair back?"

Next, the phone dropped again. "I heard her [Heard] screaming," remembered Wright, who became emotional while recalling the incident.

Wright called Heard's neighbors first, as they could get to Heard fast. He then called the police.

Testimony continues Wednesday.

Categories / Civil Rights, Criminal, Entertainment, Media, Trials

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