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HomeUncategorizedWhat Is Jury's Decision Decision In Amber Heard vs Johnny Depp Case?

What Is Jury’s Decision Decision In Amber Heard vs Johnny Depp Case?

A civil jury in Virginia is considering defamation allegations brought by Johnny Depp and his ex-wife Amber Heard after a six-week trial. The trial has included graphic testimony detailing the Hollywood stars’ brief and tumultuous marriage. But what exactly is the case about? And what would the jury have to make a decision on?

Jury members in Johnny Depp’s $50 million defamation trial against Amber Heard requested the court on Tuesday how they should assess the title of Heard’s The Washington Post op-ed.

“I Spoke Up Against Sexual Violence — And Faced Our Culture’s Wrath” ran the headline on the web version of the December 2018 story. .”

The jury was debating whether they should analyze whether the headline was derogatory or if they should consider the “substance of the remark, everything else in the op-ed,” according to Judge Penney Azcarate.

The title is one of three statements on the jury verdict papers that the jury must consider while deciding whether to decide in Depp’s favor. The seven jurors must also evaluate if the op-text ed’s contains offensive remarks.

“Then 2 years ago, I had become a public figure symbolizing domestic abuse, and I felt the full power of our culture’s hatred for women who speak out,” says one of the comments. “I had the vantage of observing, in real-time, why institutions defend guys accused of misconduct,” says the other statement.

Although Depp is not identified in the op-ed or the headline, Heard’s legal team argues that readers would understand who his ex-wife was talking to in the essay.

Also Read: Depp and Amber Jurors Hear Closings, Begin Deliberations

Whereas the body of Heard’s post only mentioned domestic abuse without specifying if it was emotional or physical, the title went one step further by alleging sexual violence.

Heard alleged throughout the trial that Depp physically attacked her after a disagreement in March 2016, but Depp’s defense team spent a lot of time trying to disprove that accusation.

While Depp’s team of lawyers has pointed out that she did not compose the op-headline ed’s — an editorial at the Post did – the actor’s side has concentrated on the point that she tweeted the story without challenging the title.

Heard has also filed a countersuit for $100 million, and the jury is currently considering her allegations that she was slandered in three separate incidents, including comments made by Depp’s attorney.

Jhonny Depp’s Lawsuit

Depp sued Heard for $50 million in defamation, claiming that an op-ed she penned for The Washington Post in 2018 harmed his career and reputation. Heard characterized her as “a public figure symbolizing domestic abuse” in the piece.

Although Depp is not named in the piece, his lawyers believe that it is apparent she was referring to him because she directly accused him of domestic abuse during their 2016 divorce process. The majority of the essay, according to Heard’s lawyers, is about public policy on domestic abuse, and she has a First Amendment right to comment on it. They also claim that Depp physically abused Heard.

Allegations Of Abuse

During the trial, Heard has detailed more than a dozen instances in which she claims Depp has abused her, including her claim that he sexually abused her with a bottle of liquor in an alcoholic rage. Depp has rejected any physical or emotional violence and alleges that Heard made up the allegations in order to damage his image. He also claims she has physically assaulted him on several occasions.

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Job Of Jury

The panel of seven members must evaluate whether two passages and the article’s title are derogatory. The court decision form instructs jurors on how to do so, including questioning them if the remarks were about Depp, were incorrect, and had a derogatory inference about him.

Heard may only be convicted of libel if the jury believes she behaved with “actual malice,” which means she either knew what she said was untrue or behaved with reckless disregard for the truth because Depp is a public figure. Depp’s defamation case must collapse, Heard’s lawyers told the jury if Heard was subjected to even a single incidence of harassment.

The panel of seven members must evaluate whether two passages and the article’s title are derogatory. The court decision form instructs jurors on how to do so, including questioning them if the remarks were about Depp, were incorrect, and had a derogatory inference about him.

Heard may only be convicted of defamation if the jury believes she behaved with “actual malice,” which means she either understood what she said was untrue or behaved with reckless disregard for the truth since Depp is a public figure. Depp’s defamation case must collapse, Heard’s lawyers told the jury if Heard was subjected to even a single incidence of harassment.

What Will Be The Punishment?

If the legal team, Depp may appeal the decision if he does not recognize the verdict.  Lawyers of Heard attempted to stop the possibility of an appeal in recent weeks, but the judge dismissed their claim.

Heard is also suing her ex-husband for compensation related to this trial in a separate action. Heard sued the company for $100 million in January 2021, alleging that Depp had engaged in a “smear campaign” against her. The suit went on to say that Depp’s actions in taking the case to court were a repetition of the “abuse and harassment” she had described in her original op-ed years before.

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