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04th May 2022

Johnny Depp forced Amber Heard to perform oral sex on him when he was angry, court hears

Charlie Herbert

Warning: this article contains details of sexual violence and assault

The first witness has taken to the stand on Amber Heard’s behalf

A psychologist has made a number of damning revelations during her testimony at Johnny Depp’s defamation trial against Amber Heard, claiming that Depp abused and sexually assaulted his ex-wife on multiple occasions.

On Tuesday, Depp’s team rested their case, bringing an end to days of testimony about Heard’s behaviour during their turbulent marriage.

Psychologist Dr Dawn Hughes was the first witness to take the stand on Heard’s behalf as her lawyers begin to set out their case in the bitter trial.

She had examined Heard over more than 29 hours of appointments between 2019 and 2021, and diagnosed her with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) caused by Johnny Depp during their relationship.

During her testimony, she revealed to the court that Depp would force Heard to have sex with him in “drug-fuelled rages.”

“When Mr. Depp was drunk or high, he’d throw her on the bed, rip off her nightgown, and try to have sex with her. There were times when he forced her to give him oral sex when he was angry,” she testified. “These weren’t in loving moments. These were angry moments.”

“These were moments of dominance, moments where he was trying to get control of her.”

She said that much of the violence stemmed from an obsessive jealousy Depp had towards Heard.

During her testimony, Dr Hughes also discussed one occasion when Depp allegedly performed a cavity search on his then-wife to “look for cocaine,” and another incident when he “penetrated her” with a vodka bottle.

A psychologist hired by Depp’s lawyers had previously told the court that he believed Heard was faking her symptoms of PTSD and in fact suffered from borderline and histrionic personality disorders.

Dr Hughes questioned this however, saying that she did not believe Heard to suffer from any personality disorder, the LA Times reports.

Texts from Depp to others during the pair’s relationship in which he mentions Heard’s ‘rotting corpse’ and having sex with her ‘burnt corpse’ have already been read out to the court.

Depp claims he never physically attacked Heard and that she was the aggressor in their relationship.

Whilst Dr Hughes acknowledged that Heard did at times push and verbally abuse Depp, she said there is a clear difference in violence when a smaller person strikes a larger person.

Because of this, she labelled Depp’s violence as intimidating and threatening to Heard’s safety, saying: “That’s just physics; that’s just proportional force.”

“Even though she yelled and hit him and said some terrible things to him, it was never able to shift the balance of power in the relationship,” Dr Hughes said.

Depp is currently suing his former wife Heard for defamation over an op-ed she wrote in 2018 in which she discussed the subject of domestic abuse.

Depp and his lawyers argue that the Washington Post piece falsely implies that Heard was physically and sexually abused by Depp while they were married from 2015 to 2017. He is seeking $50m in damages.

Heard is in turn suing her former husband, accusing him of orchestrating a “smear campaign” against her and labelling his lawsuit as a continuation of “abuse and harassment.”

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