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Johnny Depp lawyers question Amber Heard about knife, love notes in defamation case


Attorneys for Johnny Depp attempted to discredit Amber Heard‘s abuse claims in the former couple’s defamation trial overnight, introducing a knife she gave as a gift to the Pirates of the Caribbean star and affectionate notes she wrote to him.

At the start of Tuesday’s proceedings, Depp’s lawyer Camille Vasquez asked jurors to examine the knife Heard bought for Depp in 2012. Heard, best known for her role in Aquaman, had testified that Depp had already become violent toward her by that time. She also testified that Depp “tried to kill [her].”

Love notes exchanged between the pair were also shown to the court, and in one signed by Heard, she wrote that Depp was the “last person I ever meant to hurt” and “there is never a good enough reason to hurt you.”

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Amber Heard and Johnny Depp
Amber Heard and Johnny Depp watch in court as the jury comes into the courtroom after a lunch break on May 17. (AP)

Depp, 58, is suing Heard for $US50 million (approx. $71.65 million), saying she defamed him when she claimed she was a victim of domestic abuse.

Heard, 36, has countersued for US$100 million (approx. $141 million), arguing that Depp smeared her by calling her a liar.

Depp has testified that he never hit Heard and argued that she was the abuser in their relationship. He said she threw a vodka bottle at him in early 2015, severing the top of his right middle finger. Heard said she did not cause the finger injury and said she only hit him to defend herself or her sister.

Here’s what you need to know about Heard’s second day of cross-examination, and here’s what Heard said on the stand yesterday.

Amber Heard was booed by Johnny Depp’s supporters as she arrived at court

Amber Heard asked about large knife she gifted Johnny Depp

Depp’s attorney Camille Vasquez confirmed Heard and Depp’s relationship status in October 2011, and that their first year together was “magic.”

Vasquez then showed a large knife to the jury that Heard had gifted Depp in 2012, after he had already allegedly started abusing her.

“This is the knife you gave to the man who would get drunk and violent toward you?” the lawyer asked.

“This is the knife I gave him as a present, yes,” she said, adding that she did not think he would stab her with it.

Johnny Depp’s lawyer grills Amber Heard on alleged 2015 sexual assault with a bottle

Heard has previously claimed that Depp sexually assaulted her with a bottle after he sliced off the top of his finger in Australia in 2015, and Vasquez pressed Heard on the sequence of events – Depp smashing a phone, cutting off a portion of his finger, pinning Heard down on a countertop and allegedly inserting a liquor bottle into her body.

Heard said she couldn’t remember the exact sequence of events and has never claimed she does.

“As I have always said, I don’t remember exactly what happened first, or the sequence,” Heard said.

Heard was then questioned as to why no medical records from the alleged sexual assault exist. In her previous testimony, Heard claimed she had sustained injuries from the alleged attack and was bleeding.

“I didn’t seek treatment,” Heard replied.

Vasquez then showed the court messages written in black and red paint on a mirror in the couple’s Australian home on the night of the alleged assault, which Heard denied writing.

She claimed the author of the notes was Depp, and described them as “crazy conversations with himself.”

One message read: “She loves naked photos of herself. So modern, so hot.”

Another read: “Call Carly Simon she said it better babe.”

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Amber Heard
Actor Amber Heard testifies during her second day of cross-examination on May 17 in a Virginia court. (AP)

Amber Heard’s love notes to Johnny Depp shown to the court

Depp’s attorney read entries from a journal that Heard said the couple kept to share love notes.

“True love isn’t about just the madness of passion or instead picking the safety of peace. No, it’s about both,” Heard wrote in May 2015, two months after Depp’s finger injury.

“I still, perhaps more than ever, want to rip you apart, devour you and savour the taste,” she added.

In another excerpt after their July 2015 honeymoon aboard the Orient Express train, Heard said she “couldn’t imagine a more gorgeous honeymoon,” and added, “I love you more and more every passing day.”

Heard had told jurors on Monday that Depp assaulted her and wrapped a T-shirt around her neck during the trip.

A month later, Heard wrote that Depp was “my cornerstone, my heart, my all.”

“You are my life. I hate it when we fight. I hate having hurt you. I love you more than anything,” she wrote.

Asked about entries, Heard said she tried to “nurture as much peace as she possibly could,” and that “when things were good they were really good.”

In another note, Heard wrote to Depp that the actor was the “last person I ever meant to hurt” and “there is never a good enough reason to hurt you.”

The actors wed in February 2015 and their divorce was finalised about two years later.

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Johnny Depp and Amber Heard
The actors wed in February 2015 and their divorce was finalized about two years later (UK Press via Getty Images)

The legal case centers on a December 2018 opinion piece by Heard that appeared in the Washington Post. The article never mentioned Depp by name, but his lawyer told jurors it was clear that Heard was referencing him.

Depp, once among Hollywood’s biggest stars, said Heard’s allegations cost him “everything”. A new Pirates of the Caribbean movie was put on hold, and Depp was replaced in the Fantastic Beasts film franchise, a Harry Potter spinoff.

Heard’s attorneys have argued that she told the truth and that her opinion was protected free speech under the US Constitution’s First Amendment.

Closing arguments are scheduled for May 27.

Less than two years ago, Depp lost a libel case against The Sun, a British tabloid that labeled him a “wife beater”. A London High Court judge ruled that he had repeatedly assaulted Heard.

Depp’s lawyers filed the case in Fairfax County, Virginia, because the Washington Post is printed there. The newspaper is not a defendant.

If you or someone you know is impacted by sexual assault, domestic or family violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732 or visit their website. In an emergency, call 000.

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