Amber Heard feared she 'wouldn't survive' if she stayed with Johnny Depp


Amber Heard told jurors on Monday that she decided to divorce Johnny Depp because she was afraid she "wouldn't survive" if she stayed in the relationship. – Photo: AFP

Amber Heard told jurors on Monday that she decided to divorce Johnny Depp because she was afraid she "wouldn't survive" if she stayed in the relationship.

Heard resumed her testimony after a 10-day break in the defamation trial in Fairfax, Va. Heard recounted the final months of her marriage to Depp, including a series of violent incidents in which she alleges that Depp would choke her, hit her and throw objects at her during drug-fueled rages.

Heard filed for divorce in May 2016, after Depp allegedly threw a phone at her, hitting her in the face, during an argument at the couple's downtown L.A. apartment.

"I knew I had to leave him. I knew I wouldn't survive it if I didn't," she testified. "I was so scared that it was going to end really badly for me... The violence was now normal and not the exception... I believe he would have taken it too far and I wouldn't be here."

Heard began her testimony on May 4. She has previously told the jury that Depp repeatedly sexually assaulted her and that she feared for her life. Depp is suing Heard for US$50mil, claiming that she fabricated her allegations against him and destroyed his career in the process of advancing her own. His lawyers are expected to begin their cross-examination later on Monday.

Heard testified Monday that Depp could not stay sober and that his mental health began to unravel by early 2016. She said that he would seem to have conversations with people who were not there, and accuse her of saying things she had not said.

The police were called to the couple's apartment on the night of the phone incident. The officers have previously testified that Heard declined to make a report, and they did not see evidence of a crime.

Heard explained that she did not name Depp or cooperate with the officers because she did not want him to be arrested.

"I wanted to protect Johnny," she said. "I didn't want him to be in trouble. I didn't want this to come out."

A few days later, though, she filed for a domestic violence restraining order. She said that she did so because she wanted to change the locks in the apartment, and because security would always let him in without warning.

"I couldn't sleep. I would wake up in a panic. I was losing hair. I was losing weight," she said. "I was scared and very conflicted."

Jurors were shown a series of photos of Heard's face with a bruise on her right cheek. Depp's lawyers have already presented testimony from people who saw Heard around that time and did not recall seeing a bruise on her face. Heard testified in detail about how she would conceal the bruise with makeup before leaving the house, noting that paparazzi would typically photograph her the minute she stepped out the door.

"I always wear makeup," she said. "I'm not going to walk around L.A. with bruises on my face." – Reuters

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Actor , Johnny Depp , Amber Heard


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