In the ongoing defamation trial in Virginia, Johnny Depp shared details about his yearlong marriage to Amber Heard, often depicting her as an aggressor and even concluded his testimony saying he was the victim of domestic violence in their relationship and was “broken” by the time their marriage fell apart. It’s now time for Amber Heard to present her side of the story.
For starters, Amber Heard bid to dismiss Johnny Depp’s defamation lawsuit during the trial, which commenced last month. But it was denied by a judge. According to Variety, Heard’s attorney made a standard motion to dismiss the suit mentioning that Depp’s attorneys had failed to present enough evidence to prove their case, although Judge Penney Azcarate denied the motion.
Now, one week after a doctor hired by Johnny Depp’s legal team claimed Amber Heard had no signs of post-traumatic stress disorder, another forensic psychologist testified that the actress does indeed suffer from PTSD.
Dr. Dawn Hughes, a clinical and forensic psychologist, took the stand Tuesday as the first witness called by Heard’s legal team after the plaintiffs rested their case in Depp’s defamation trial against his ex-wife. Hughes shared her professional findings after assessing Heard’s case files and meeting with the actress four times in person and twice via Zoom, totaling about 29 hours. She also interviewed some of Heard’s treating physicians and the star’s late mom Paige.
After considering the data, Dr. Hughes arrived at a few expert opinions, including that “intimate partner violence” occurred between Heard and Depp.
“Ms. Heard’s report of intimate partner violence and the records that I reviewed, is consistent with what we know in the field about intimate partner violence — characterized by physical violence, psychological aggression, s**ual violence, coercive control and surveillance behaviors,” Dr. Hughes explained.
As for her second main opinion, Dr. Hughes told the court that Heard demonstrated “very clear psychological and traumatic effects” from three statements Depp made through his attorney.
“The second main opinion was that Ms. Heard demonstrated, very clear, psychological and traumatic effects or the exacerbation of trauma, from those statements that Mr. Depp made through his attorney,” she continued. “There were three statements that we evaluated to see how they affected her emotionally and psychologically and it was my determination they did.”
“I diagnosed Ms. Heard with post-traumatic stress disorder,” Dr. Hughes said. “Etiology is the cause. In order to meet the criteria for post-traumatic stress disorder, you have to have an actual cause. It’s one of the few diagnostic entities that we have to have a cause for, and the cause was the intimate partner violence by Mr. Depp.”
She continued, “That was what was pushing the symptoms, that was what was related to the intrusive phenomena, that was related to her avoidance, that was related to her differences in her mood, that was related to her avoidance efforts, so the cause was the intimate partner violence by Mr. Depp.”
As for the violence Dr. Hughes said Heard suffered, she claimed that Depp “pushed, shoved, slapped, choked and kicked” Heard as well as “slammed her into a wall,” causing the actress to sustain injuries that ranged from “bruising” and “pain” to some “cuts” and a “loss of consciousnesses” following an alleged incident between the pair.
Last week, Dr. Shannon Curry, a licensed clinical psychologist, said Amber Heard suffered from personality disorder. However, Dr. Hudges disagrees.