Amber Heard maintains that Johnny Depp abused her.
More of her post-defamation trial interview with NBC News’s Savannah Guthrie airs Friday night in a Dateline special called Amber Heard: After the Verdict — and a 20-minute preview is now streaming on Peacock.
In this part (after parts one and two on Today this week), Heard maintains she was a victim of abuse by her former husband, despite a Fairfax, Va., jury not believing her allegations of physical abuse and sexual assault. She also turned over to the news outlet what she said was key evidence left out of the trial: a binder of therapist’s notes documenting the alleged abuse beginning in 2012 until they split in 2016.
“There’s a binder worth of years of notes dating back to 2011 from the very beginning of my relationship that were taken by my doctor, who I was reporting the abuse to,” said Heard, who shared the notes publicly for the first time.
The documents from Heard’s therapist were ruled as hearsay by the judge and were inadmissible during the six-week trial, which concluded June 1. Guthrie and NBC News analyzed the documents, noting that as far back as 2012, Heard was talking about physical abuse.
In January 2012, the therapist wrote that Heard said Depp “hit her” and “threw her on the floor.” Eight months later, it was noted he “ripped her nightgown” and “threw her on the bed.” In 2013, the therapist noted said Heard said Depp “threw her against a wall and threatened to kill her.”
“Her notes represented years — years — of real-time explanations of what was going on,” Heard said.
Depp has vehemently denied all allegations of abuse against Heard. His spokesperson responded to Heard publicly surfacing the therapist notes, telling NBC News, “It’s unfortunate that while Johnny is looking to move forward with his life, the defendant and her team are back to repeating, reimagining and re-litigating matters that have already been decided by the Court and a verdict that was unanimously and unequivocally decided by the jury in Johnny’s favor.”
While much of the interview retreads what was previously seen this week on Today, new parts included Heard maintaining she was physically abused by Depp.
“Of course and I will till my dying day,” she said. “I know what happened to me. I’m here as a survivor. To my dying day I will stand by every word of my testimony.”
Guthrie pointed out that Depp’s lawyers argued that no other women from the Pirates of the Caribbean star’s past relationships came forward to say he was physically abusive to them.
“Look what happened to me when I came forward,” Heard replied. “Would you?”
Guthrie also asked Heard about Depp’s claims that she was the abuser.
“I testified on the stand — I got hit for a very long time before I knew how to even try to defend myself,” Heard said. “When you are living in violence and it becomes normal, as I testified to, you have to adapt. You adopt strategies to cope with it. If it meant … the difference between a broken nose or a sore cheek, I would do it.”
As for why she was speaking out — asking if was because she was brave, reckless or vindictive — Heard replied, “One thing I’m not is vindictive. This would be a real lousy way to get vengeance.”
She continued, My goal … is I just want people to see me as a human being.”
Heard plans to appeal the verdict, beyond that she hopes to move on with her life as well.
“I look forward to living my life and I have a long one, I hope, in front of me,” said Heard, who welcomed a daughter last year. “I will continue to walk through this with my chin up.”
As previously noted, Guthrie’s husband, Michael Feldman, served as a consultant for Depp’s legal team. The Today anchor disclosed that on-air last week, but she has faced some criticism for being the one interviewing Heard.
Heard and Depp met making The Rum Diary. They were married in 2015 and split a year later with Heard filing a domestic violence restraining order. Their divorce was settled in 2016 but in 2018 Heard penned an op-ed for the Washington Post stating, “I became a public figure representing domestic abuse, and I felt the full force of our culture’s wrath for women who speak out.” While she didn’t name Depp in the piece, he sued her for defamation over the article.
On June 1, a jury found Heard liable on the three counts of defamation and awarded Depp $10.35 million. The jury separately found that Depp, through his lawyer Adam Waldman, defamed Heard in one of three counts in her countersuit. She was awarded $2 million.
A juror spoke out this week to Good Morning America about why the panel reached the verdict that it did.
Prior to the U.S. trial, which captivated the country, the High Court of London ruled against Depp in a separate defamation case stemming from Depp suing The Sun for reporting on the abuse allegations. It was ruled in 2020 that is not libelous to call Depp a “wife beater” in an article because the “great majority of alleged assaults of Ms. Heard by Mr. Depp,” 12 of 14 incidents, “have been proved to the civil standard.”
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