“One of the first things he said was, ‘I’m so sorry for all those women. This is a setback for all women in and out of the courtroom,’” said attorney Elaine Bredehoft. today’s program Thursday morning. “She feels the burden of that.”
A The jury found on Wednesday that Ms Heard defamed Mr Depp on all three counts in his lawsuit against her regarding a 2018 op-ed she wrote in the Washington Post about being a victim of domestic abuse.
The jury also found in favor of one of the three claims in Ms. Heard’s countersuit, finding that Mr. Depp’s lawyer had called the abuse allegations against her ex-husband misleading.
Bredehoft said the verdict sends a “horrible message” to survivors of domestic abuse.
“It’s a significant setback, because that’s exactly what it means,” he told NBC’s Savannah Guthrie. “Unless you take out his phone and videotape your spouse or his partner beating him up, you’re effectively not going to be believed.”
Ms. Bredehoft also explained that “an enormous amount of evidence was suppressed” during the several-week trial in Fairfax, Virginia.
“Really what happened here is a story of two trials. Johnny Depp filed a lawsuit in the UK for the same case,” he said in reference to Mr. Depp’s 2020 UK libel case against Sunthat she had labeled him a “wife beater” over Ms. Heard’s accusations.
“The burden of proof was easier for him there, Sun I had to prove it was true. And the court found there, and we weren’t allowed to tell the jury this, but the court found that Mr. Depp had committed at least 12 acts of domestic violence, including sexual violence against Amber.
So what did Depp’s team learn from this? Demonize Amber and suppress the evidence. We had a huge amount of evidence that was suppressed in this case that was in the UK case. In the case of the UK, when it came, Amber won and Depp lost.”
Among the suppressed evidence were “very significant” medical records that showed “a pattern going back to 2012 in which Amber reported this to her therapist,” Bredehoft said.
The lawyer went on to speculate that jurors may have been influenced by the “unbalanced” social media frenzy surrounding the case, which swung dramatically in favor of Depp.
“How can you not[be influenced]?” she asked. “They went home every night. They have families. Families are on social networks. We had a 10 day break in the middle due to the court conference. There’s no way they haven’t been influenced by that.”
Ms. Bredehoft confirmed that Ms. Heard will file an appeal, saying: “She has excellent reasons for doing so.”
He added that Ms. Heard would “absolutely not” be able to afford the million in damages awarded to her ex-husband.
The Aquaman actress reacted to the verdict herself in a statement Wednesday afternoon saying she was “heartbroken.”
“The disappointment I feel today is beyond words. I am heartbroken that the mountain of evidence was still not enough to stand up to the disproportionate power, influence and influence of my ex-husband,” she said.
“I am even more disappointed with what this verdict means for other women. It’s a setback. It turns back the clock to a time when a woman who spoke up and spoke up could be publicly shamed and humiliated. It pushes back the idea that violence against women should be taken seriously.”
And he added that the result was an attack on freedom of expression.
“I am sad because I lost this case. But I’m even sadder because I seem to have lost a right I thought I had as an American: to speak freely and openly.”