Depp is suing the British tabloid after it branded him a “wife beater” over his alleged treatment of Heard during their relationship between 2011 and 2016. Depp strenuously denies the allegation.
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Heard took to the witness stand on Monday to provide evidence on the 14 allegations of domestic violence she has leveled at Depp, which are relied upon by The Sun’s Rupert Murdoch-owned publisher News Group Newspapers.
In a written witness statement provided to the court, Heard accused Depp of subjecting her to verbal and physical abuse, including screaming, swearing, threats, punching, slapping, kicking, head-butting and choking, as well as “extremely controlling and intimidating behaviour.”
Per Press Association, she said: “Some incidents were so severe that I was afraid he was going to kill me, either intentionally or just by losing control and going too far. He explicitly threatened to kill me many times, especially later in our relationship.”
In the witness stand on Monday morning, Heard described one incident in Japan in 2015, in which she alleged that Depp attacked her in a hotel room. “There was an argument in a hotel room in Tokyo that resulted in Johnny kneeling on my back and hitting me on the back of the head,” she said.
In her statement, Heard claimed that Depp would attribute his behavior to a split personality. “He would blame all his actions on a self-created third party instead of himself, which he often called ‘the monster,'” she said. “He would speak about it as if it was another person or personality and not him doing all these things.”
She added: “When Johnny puts his attention on you, with all his intensity and darkness, it is unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. When I say he was dark, he had a violent and dark way of speaking: the way he talked about our relationship being ‘dead or alive’ and telling me that death was the only way out of the relationship.”
The Aquaman actress, who married Depp in 2015 before they divorced a year later, accused Depp of living in a state of “weaponised victimhood” and functioning off “zero accountability to anyone.” Heard added that she thought she could “fix” Depp.
“I thought he could get better and that he would, and I wanted that so badly right to the end. After violent episodes, his team would try to convince me to stay with him or to come back, often telling me he was sorry and would get clean for me. I think I stayed not only because I had hope of him getting clean and things changing, but also because of the responsibility I felt, being told I was the one to motivate him and help him to get clean,” she said.
This was in stark contrast to the early flushes of their relationship, when Heard said the Edward Scissorhands actor “captivated” her. “When we were together it was always just the two of us. We would be at his compound, behind gates. It was like I was dating a king, with his level of fame and the way he lived,” she said.
The trial continues.