When Will the Depp vs Heard Trial End - Virginia Jury's Verdict Be Announced
|When Will Johnny Depp vs Amber Heard Trial End|
When Will The Virginia Jury's Verdict Be Announced
Updated: The jury did not reach a unanimous verdict by end of business Friday (May 27) and have been dismissed. They will resume deliberations on Tuesday morning (May 31), following the Memorial Day holiday.
The fate of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard — and whether either side will be liable for millions in damages in their dueling defamation cases — lies in the hands of a Virginia jury.
Seven jurors overseeing the Fairfax trial will decide whether Heard, 36, defamed Depp, 58
Johnny Depp is suing Amber Heard, his ex-wife, for 50 million dollars as he believes that she dragged his name through the mud following a domestic abuse column she wrote for the Washington Post in 2018.
She has counter sued him for $100m, claiming Depp defamed her when his legal team referred to her claims as “fake” and a “sexual violence hoax”.
After a week-long break, both sides returned to the court room on Monday for what is expected to be the last few days of the trial.
This Tuesday, May 17, marks the 17th day of the trial involving Johnny Depp and Amber Heard, following the return of proceedings yesterday after an 11-day pause.
Both Depp and Heard have given their version of events so far, with many witnesses having also contributed to the trial, but at the moment it is Heard who is still being cross-examined by Depp's lawyers.
Johnny Depp and Amber Heard have returned to court 18months after their last showdown. It comes after Depp lost their first legal battle back in November 2020 – a libel case against the Sun newspaper over an article that called him a “wife beater”. The defamation trial so far has featured painful accusations of unreasonable behaviour and domestic abuse. More than four weeks into these latest proceedings, we look at when the trial is expected to end…
How Long the Trial will Last and Why it’s been Extended
|Depp vs Heard Trial: When Will The Verdict Announced?|
The frenzy surrounding the trial has not left much room for a coherent and productive discussion on domestic violence, and it is unclear if after a decision is reached, it will. In part, the case has cast light on male victims of domestic violence. However, to others, it seems that the relationship was unhealthy and that both parties acted wrongly.
To others on social media, the case appears very black and white, but many who support survivors of domestic abuse or have experienced spousal abuse, know that this is rarely the case.
The trial was scheduled to conclude on Thursday 19 May, but was extended on Monday as there is still a significant amount of evidence to be presented.
It is now set to end on 27 May, after which the jury will consider their verdict.
They will decide whether, on the balance of probability, Heard did defame Depp in the 2018 Washington Post article that is the crux of the trial.
Court is in session from Mondays to Thursdays, starting at 9am eastern time and finishing at 5pm.
That means proceedings begin at 2pm UK time and finish at 10pm.
What happens to Amber Heard if Johnny Depp wins?
TheVirginia jury must also determine whether she should be on the hook for millions in damages.
“The jury is going to determine damages for both the claim and the counterclaim,” sources close to Heard’s legal team told The Post. “If the jury finds Amber was liable for Mr. Depp, it would determine damages, if it found that Mr. Depp was liable for Amber’s counterclaims, it makes a determination of damages.”
The pair have been duking it out before a jury at a Fairfax County Courthouse for four weeks. The trial is currently on a one-week recess.
Closing arguments are set for May 27 and the jury could begin deliberating the estranged couple’s fate soon after.
There is also a possibility that the jury could be unpersuaded by either side and determine that neither Depp nor Heard should be awarded damages, the source close to Heard’s legal team said.
A Depp spokesperson confirmed, “Jury decides damages and yes it is possible that no damages are awarded.”
If the jury doesn’t find Heard should be on the hook in Depp’s case, she would be entitled to recoup the cost of her legal fees from Depp. That amount would be determined by a judge at a later point, the sources said.
But should Depp succeed, it could have a “chilling effect” that would discourage other alleged victims from coming forward, said Halim Dhanidina, a criminal defense attorney and former California judge.
If the hypothetical win also leads to a substantial money judgment awarded to Depp, “then I’m sure there are people out there who would think twice about making statements if those statements could expose them to legal liability,” Dhanidina said.
On the other hand, “we don’t want to create a world where people feel like they can say whatever they want even if they know it’s not true,” the former judge noted. “A verdict will have a chilling effect one way or the other regardless of what the verdict is,” Dhanidina said.
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