FALLS CHURCH, Va. (AP) — Jurors in Johnny Depp’s libel lawsuit towards ex-wife Amber Heard heard a snippet of testimony Tuesday contradicting considered one of Heard’s key witnesses, however a lot of the context was once stripped away.
Jennifer Howell — who as soon as hired Heard’s sister, Whitney Henriquez — testified in brief Tuesday within the six-week civil trial thru a recorded deposition.
Depp is suing Heard for libel in Fairfax County Circuit Court over a December 2018 op-ed she wrote in The Washington Post describing herself as “a public figure representing domestic abuse.” His legal professionals say he was once defamed via the thing even if it by no means discussed his identify.
Depp has denied he ever struck Heard, and says she was once the abuser within the dating. Heard has testified about greater than a dozen separate cases of bodily abuse she says she suffered at Depp’s fingers.
Howell testified that she despatched an e mail in 2020 to Henriquez begging her to inform the reality.
Jurors, although, didn’t see the letter, nor did Howell provide an explanation for in what approach she concept Henriquez was once being untruthful. The edited deposition performed in courtroom for not up to quarter-hour — Howell looked as if it would stroll out of the deposition sooner than legal professionals had finished their wondering.
In a courtroom file, although, Howell is going into a lot higher element. She offers a four-page declaration through which she says Henriquez confided in her that Heard was once the aggressor within the battle and Henriquez allegedly stated she concept Heard “was going to kill Johnny.”
Howell additionally says within the declaration that Henriquez instructed her and others of their place of business that Heard bring to a halt Depp’s finger in a battle the couple had in Australia. The severed finger has been some degree of dispute right through the trial. Depp says the finger was once severed when Heard lobbed a vodka bottle at him. Heard says Depp did it to himself on an evening when he was once in a drunken rage and sexually assaulted her with a bourbon bottle.
Henriquez is the one considered one of Heard’s witnesses who testified within the six-week trial that she individually witnessed Depp bodily attack Heard, in a battle the place she stated every landed blows at the different whilst she was once stuck between the 2.
It’s now not fully transparent why Howell’s testimony was once so restricted. Throughout the trial, although, Judge Penney Azcarate has strictly enforced regulations restricting rumour proof, and Howell’s description of what Henriquez instructed her would most likely be a vintage instance of rumour except Depp’s legal professionals may declare some form of exception to the rumour rule.
In Howell’s declaration, she said that she was once disillusioned when she discovered that Heard had pledged hundreds of thousands of greenbacks to the American Civil Liberties Union and a youngsters’s sanatorium, when Howell concept the cash may do extra excellent at The Art of Elysium, the nonprofit she ran and that had hired Henriquez.
The restricted nature of Howell’s testimony makes it unclear if jurors will draw the connections that Depp’s crew hopes to make.
Howell testified as a rebuttal witness for Depp after Heard rested her case Tuesday morning with out calling Depp to the stand — Heard’s legal professionals had to begin with urged they’d name Depp as a witness.
Jurors would possibly nonetheless pay attention extra from Depp. His crew has indicated they’ll name him to the stand Wednesday.
Also Tuesday, the fame information web site TMZ filed an emergency movement looking for to dam the testimony of a former worker, Morgan Tremaine.
TMZ stated it’s involved that Tremaine is ready to testify Wednesday for Depp and violate a pledge of confidentiality that the inside track outlet supplied to a supply who gave TMZ knowledge associated with the couple’s high-profile divorce.
Heard has denied that she tipped off information retailers to the truth that she bought a short lived restraining order after submitting for divorce from Depp in 2016. Heard alleged Depp abused her in that utility, and Heard was once photographed via paparazzi leaving the courthouse with an obvious bruise on her cheek.
Depp’s legal professionals have stated she sought exposure about her abuse allegations to falsely injury his recognition.
Also Tuesday, Judge Penney Azcarate rejected a movement from Depp’s lawyers to toss out a $100 million counterclaim she filed towards Depp. The counterclaim alleges Depp’s then-lawyer, Adam Waldman, defamed Heard when he referred to as her abuse allegations a hoax.
Azcarate stated the bar for tossing out a declare sooner than it is going to the jury is exceedingly excessive, and stated there’s sufficient proof to permit it to move ahead. She had already dominated Depp may well be held accountable for statements made via his legal professional, a concept Depp’s crew disputes.
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