Monday’s testimony by a hand surgeon showed that Johnny Depp couldn’t have lost his tip of the middle finger in the same way he claimed it to jurors in his civil suit against Amber Heard.
One of the key issues in the lawsuit revolves around the finger injury that Depp sustained in a fight in Australia in March 2015. Depp claims he was hurt when Heard threw the vodka bottle at him. Heard claimed that she did not see the exact incident, but that it took place on a night when a sexually assaulted Depp with a vodka bottle.
Fairfax County Circuit Court has filed a libel suit against Heard over an op-ed that she published in December 2018. It described herself as “a public figure representative of domestic abuse.” Depp’s lawyers claim that he was defamed in the article, even though it did not mention his name.
Depp denies ever having struck Heard and claims that she was the abuser. Heard testified to more than a dozen instances of physical abuse that she claims she suffered at Depp’s hands.
Monday’s testimony saw jurors see horrifying photos and Richard Moore, a surgeon, testified about the severed fingers. Depp said that Depp had described how his palm was on a bar and was struck by the bottle.
Moore did not treat Depp but he testified that Depp’s description was unlikely due to the fact that his fingernail remained intact. Moore stated that Depp’s fingernail was exposed because he described his hand placement. It would have been damaged. Moore said that there would have been additional cuts to the rest of Moore’s hand as a result of the glass breaking on impact.
Depp claimed that Heard cut off the finger by throwing vodka bottles at it, but he also told others and sent texts to say he did it himself. He claimed that the finger was pinched between solid accordion door frames.
Depp now claims he lied in order to protect Heard. Moore testified that he was consistent with the injury by having his finger pinched in accordion door doors.
Now, the trial is in its sixth week. Monday’s testimony was quite routine in a trial that provided a disturbing glimpse into the couple’s toxic relationship. It was expected that Depp would be called to the stand by Heard’s lawyers Monday. However, that didn’t happen. Elaine Bredehoft (Heard’s lawyer) stated at the end of Monday that they were still discussing whether or not to call Depp.
Both Depp and Heard had been extensively discussed by the jury — each witness was present for four days and underwent grueling cross-examinations.
Monday also saw a psychiatrist who testified that Depp’s behavior resembled a person whose alcohol and drug abuse contributes to domestic violence.
Wayne Dennison, Depp’s lawyer, questioned the credibility and ethics of the psychiatrist’s opinions given that he had never examined Depp.
Dennison questioned Kathryn Arnold, an entertainment expert, about Dennison’s assertion that Heard was out of a $40 million-to-50 million deal. Heard claimed Heard had been harmed by claims of abuse made by Depp’s lawyers. Heard filed a counterclaim against Depp on the basis of those statements.
Arnold stated that she compared Heard’s career to “comparable” stars such as Jason Momoa, Gal Gadot, and Zendaya in order to see where Heard would be if Depp’s lawyer Adam Waldman hadn’t defamed her.
Dennison laughed at the idea that Heard was in the same class as these stars during his questioning. He also dismissed Heard’s role in “Aquaman,” stating that the sequel to the superhero film “Aquaman”, which will be released later this year, is more of a “buddy comedy,” than a film with Heard as the romantic lead.
Arnold maintained that Heard was “on the brink of a great career.”
Over its duration, the trial has attracted increasing public attention. As they tried to secure one of the 100 public seats, people gathered overnight to fight for their place in line. One woman confessed her love to Depp during morning break and asked when he would acknowledge that he was the father of the baby she was holding.
She was taken out of the courtroom.