Hollywood actress, Amber Heard, suffered from post traumatic stress disorder as a result of “intimate partner violence” from her former husband, ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ star, Johnny Depp, a psychologist testified on Tuesday.
Dawn Hughes, a clinical and forensic psychologist, also said that Depp suffered from “obsessive control” and “obsessive jealousy” issues towards Heard during their “highly volatile” relationship.
Hughes was the first witness to take the stand after Depp’s lawyers rested their case in the defamation suit he filed against Heard over an op-ed she wrote for The Washington Post in December 2018 in which she described herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse.”
Heard never named the 58-year-old Depp in the Post op-ed, but he sued her for implying he was a domestic abuser and is seeking $50 million in damages.
The Texas-born Heard countersued, asking for $100 million and claiming that she suffered “rampant physical violence and abuse” at his hands.
Depp has denied ever being physically abusive towards Heard and has claimed at the blockbuster defamation trial taking place in Virginia that she was the one who was frequently violent.
Hughes said she had diagnosed Heard with PTSD after conducting four separate tests.
“Those tests allow me to make a definitive diagnosis that she suffers from PTSD,” she said.
“There’s significant support for the fact that there was intimate partner violence in this relationship,” Hughes told the seven-person jury hearing the case in Fairfax County Circuit Court.
Hughes’ findings contradicted those of a doctor who appeared as a witness for Depp, Shannon Curry, who said the actress did not have PTSD.
Curry, also a clinical and forensic psychologist, said it was her opinion that the 36-year-old actress, who had a starring role in the movie ‘Aquaman’, has borderline personality disorder and histrionic personality disorder.
Hughes said Heard did not suffer from those disorders.
Hughes is to be cross-examined by Depp’s lawyers on Wednesday.
Earlier Tuesday, the judge hearing the defamation suit rejected a request by Heard’s attorneys to toss the case.
They claimed Depp had failed to prove he was defamed by the op-ed.