FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) — A jury on Tuesday ended a second day of deliberations without returning a verdict in the defamation lawsuits filed by Johnny Depp and his ex-wife Amber Heard over their volatile and unhappy marriage.
That The seven-member civil jury heard the closing arguments on Friday and thought for about two hours before leaving for the Memorial Day long weekend. The jury then deliberated for another seven hours on Tuesday. They are scheduled to resume deliberations Wednesday in Fairfax County Circuit Court.
Depp is suing Heard for $50 million, accusing her of defaming him with a 2018 op-ed in which she described herself as “a public figure who depicts domestic violence.” Heard filed a $100 million counterclaim against the Pirates of the Caribbean star after his attorney called her allegations fraudulent. Each accuses the other of having destroyed his career.
Transcript During the six-week trial, there was a litany of garish details of their brief marriage. Heard testified that Depp physically or sexually assaulted her more than a dozen times. During his testimony, Depp testified that he never hit Heard, that she fabricated the abuse allegations, and that she was the one who physically assaulted him on multiple occasions.
During the closing arguments, both sides of the jury stated that a verdict in their favor would restore the lives of their clients.
On Tuesday, Depp’s attorneys asked Judge Penney Azcarate to direct the jury to ignore part of Heard’s attorney’s closing argument.
In their written filing, Depp’s attorneys said Heard’s attorney told the jury his decision in the case would send a message to “every victim of domestic violence, everywhere.” Heard attorney Benjamin Rottenborn told the jury that a verdict against Heard “sends a message that no matter what you do as an abuse victim, you always have to do more.”
“No matter how honest you are about your own imperfections and your own shortcomings in a relationship, you have to be perfect for people to believe you. Don’t send that message,” Rottenborn said.
Depp’s attorneys argued that Rottenborn’s argument wrongly prompted the jury to focus on a larger social goal than the case they had to decide.
“Such reasoning by Ms. Heard’s attorney unduly invites the jury to rule the case ‘on the basis of passion and prejudice,’ and specific direction from the jury is necessary to remove this impropriety,” the attorneys argued by idiot
The judge told Depp’s attorneys in court that she would not consider the motion because the case was now in the hands of a jury.
A public relations firm for Heard did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the filing.
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