Amber Heard revises her timeline, testifies alleged abuse by ex Johnny Depp began early on in their relationship

Amber Heard and Johnny Depp
Amber Heard & Johnny Depp Getty Images Remix By Keane Eacobellis

Content warning: the article contains descriptions of alleged domestic abuse.

Amber Heard is continuing to detail alleged abuse by her ex-husband, Johnny Depp, claiming she previously got the date of when the abuse started wrong due to being in denial amid a trial of dueling defamation lawsuits that resumed Monday after a week-long break.

Depp is suing Heard for $50 million for defamation, for allegedly false domestic abuse accusations she made against him that he said hurt his career. Heard is counter-suing Depp, also for defamation, for $100 million.

The highly-publicized trial has been live-streamed on the Law & Crime Network YouTube channel, and other outlets, from a courtroom in Fairfax, Virginia since mid-April.

Heard once again gave alleged domestic abuse by Depp on Monday, saying in part, “You never forget the first time someone hits you like that.”

However, she admitted she did previously get the date wrong of when the abuse started.

“I’m embarrassed to say, I would’ve liked to have believed the period of time in which I had to fall in love with Johnny, in which we fell in love and he was sober, and he wasn’t violent to me, lasted for a lot longer than it did,” Heard said when asked why she mixed up the dates. “I think I would’ve liked to have believed that I wasn’t hit so early in the relationship and still stayed.”

Heard added that Depp did get sober at one point, in 2012, but prior to that relative period of peace, it was “really violent and chaotic as well.”

Heard also testified that other than on May 21, 2016, police had been called multiple times throughout the relationship, including Dec. 2011, 2012, and March 2013.

In previous testimony, multiple police officers testified they did not see injuries on Heard nor were able to determine that a crime had taken place during two separate 9-11 calls on May 21, 2016.

A video recording of Depp slamming kitchen cabinets was also played for the jury amid Heard’s testimony.

The video, which culminates in him pouring a large glass of wine and then discovering that he was being recorded, was previously played for the jury during Depp’s testimony.

Heard also testified that leading up to her birthday on April 21, 2016, Depp was allegedly disappearing for days on end. On the birthday itself, Heard claimed Depp couldn’t show up at the party. But they had an argument later that night where he allegedly got violent, shoving her down, and she shoved him back. Heard alleged Depp then hurled a “magnum” sized bottle of champagne at her, which whizzed past her, and went through a favorite painting.

Previous testimony by Heard indicated Depp had allegedly slapped and punched her on multiple occasions and twice sexually assaulted her.

While Heard maintains she was abused by Depp, Depp claims just the opposite: he was abused by her and not the other way around. 

Depp’s lawsuit against Heard centers around an op-ed she wrote for the Washington Post in 2018, in which she describes herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse.” Though Depp isn’t named in the article, Heard made prior allegations of abuse against Depp in 2016, which he claims is referenced in the piece.

In addition to Heard wrapping up her direct testimony on the stand this week, she is expected to undergo cross-examination by Depp’s team soon thereafter. Heard also has several other witnesses lined up, including her sister Whitney Henriquez, actor Ellen Barkin, and Depp himself. This will be the second time Depp has taken the stand after he previously testified on behalf of himself and was cross-examined by Heard’s team.

If you are experiencing domestic abuse, or if you believe someone you know is being abused, contact The National Domestic Violence Hotline. The hotline can be reached at 1-800-799-SAFE or spoken with online via the hotline’s website. Mobile phone owners can also text “START” to the number 88788.

About the author

Danny Peterson

Danny Peterson

Danny Peterson covers entertainment news for WGTC and has previously enjoyed writing about housing, homelessness, the coronavirus pandemic, historic 2020 Oregon wildfires, and racial justice protests. Originally from Juneau, Alaska, Danny received his Bachelor's degree in English Literature from the University of Alaska Southeast and a Master's in Multimedia Journalism from the University of Oregon. He has written for The Portland Observer, worked as a digital enterprise reporter at KOIN 6 News, and is the co-producer of the award-winning documentary 'Escape from Eagle Creek.'