Depp v. Heard Conclusion



The month and a half long trial between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard has finally come to a conclusion. 

From Apr. 11 to Jun. 3, the two movie stars have battled in court over an op-ed article that Heard published in 2018. Depp sued Heard for $50 million in defamation, claiming that Heard’s article hindered his acting opportunities. Though a defamation case, the focus shifted towards alleged domestic abuse between the couple for the majority of the trial.

“From the very beginning, the goal of bringing this case was to reveal the truth, regardless of the outcome,” Depp said on Jun. 1. “Speaking the truth was something that I owed my children and to all those who have remained steadfast in their support of me. I feel at peace knowing I have finally accomplished that.” 

The jury gave me my life back. I am truly humbled”

— Johnny Depp

The trial ended with the jury unanimously finding, over the course of three days and 13 hours, that Heard defamed Depp with her op-ed article. The jurors concluded that Heard had written the article with the intent to harm Depp’s image. Depp was awarded $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million in punitive damages. The punitive amount, however, was reduced to $350,000, Virginia’s legal limit. 

“The jury gave me my life back. I am truly humbled,” Depp said.

Though the original trial was over, Heard countersued for $100 million in defamation. Her argument revolved around a few statements made by Depp’s former attorney to Daily Meal in 2020 where he mentioned the alleged abuse as a “hoax.” The jury found that there was only one account of Depp’s argument found to be false. Heard was awarded $2 million in compensatory damages, but did not receive any punitive damages.

“The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I’m heartbroken that the mountain of evidence still was enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence, and sway of my ex-husband,” Heard said shortly after the trial’s end. “I’m even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It sets back the clock of time when a woman who spoke up and spoke out could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It sets back the idea that violence against women is to be taken seriously.”