For the past couple of weeks, the internet has closely followed the case between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard. During the six-week trial, explicit and graphic evidence and testimony was thrown from both sides, giving the world an idea of how the Hollywood couple’s past relationship went.
On Wednesday, a Virginia jury ruled that Amber Heard had indeed defamed her ex husband. However, they also ruled in favor of the actress in some aspects of her countersuit. They awarded Depp $15 million in damages from Heard while the panel also awarded Heard $2 million in damages.
For three days, the five-man, two-woman jury deliberated and unanimously found Heard liable for all three counts of defamation against Depp. Heard prevailed on just one of the three counterclaims she made against Depp.
“The disappointment I feel today is beyond words,” said the actress in a statement. “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.”
“I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women,” she continued. “It is a setback. It 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.”
Johnny Depp had been in England for the past few days and was absent in court for the verdict, but he welcomed the verdict in a statement on an Instagram post that quickly received millions of likes.
“Six years ago, my life, the life of my children, the lives of those closest to me, and also, the lives of the people, who for many, many years have supported and believed in me were forever changed,” said Depp. “The jury gave me my life back. From the very beginning, the goal of bringing this case was to reveal the truth, regardless of the outcome. The best is yet to come and a new chapter has finally begun.”
The entire ordeal started when the Pirates of the Caribbean star sued Heard for $50 million, arguing that she defamed him whilst calling herself “a public figure representing domestic abuse” in a newspaper opinion piece. In turn, Heard countersued for $100 million, saying Depp smeared her when his lawyer waved off her accusations as “a hoax.” Depp maintained that he never hit Heard or any woman, and instead pointed to her as the perpetrator of violence in their relationship.
Johnny Depp and Amber Heard met eleven years ago on the production of The Rum Diary. They later wed in 2015 before divorcing two years later.