The verdict for the nearly seven-week defamation trial between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard has arrived. On Wednesday, a split verdict was delivered, with the jury finding both parties liable but Depp was awarded $10 million in compensatory damages and $5 million dollars in punitive damages (Although the judge in the case said Depp’s punitive damages would be capped at $350,000 in accordance with Virginia law). The jury awarded Heard $2 million in compensatory damages and nothing in punitive damages. Depp had sought $50 million in damages with Heard counter-suing for $100 million.
The consecutive “Yes” answers brought about many reactions playing off the repeated word.
“Make no mistake – majority of the ppl supporting Depp do not think he’s an angel,” one user wrote. “But the mere fact that she went so hard with these ridiculous allegations and SHE acted like she was an angel; that’s the reason ppl are going so hard for him.”
A woman who falsely accuses a man makes it harder for every woman to come forward and be believed.
What’s worse in this case it is proven that Amber was the abuser and attempted to gaslight us all.
Amber heard deserves this verdict. Justice is served. #verdictwatch
— boogie2988, Ceo of Cringe 3WWBB (@Boogie2988) June 1, 2022
Many also expressed disappointment in Heard’s losses.
As we await the verdict in the Depp-Heard trial, I am still thinking of this piece
I Can’t Wait To Watch The Inevitable Documentary About How We All Wronged Amber Heardhttps://t.co/wI7psFJNrG
— Jessica Martinez (@jessicamartinez) June 1, 2022
Some emphasized both sides of the trial and how gender identity plays into reporting abuse.
Another user tweeted, “glad to see Johnny [Depp] get justice, but now let’s keep the same energy for female victims of domestic violence! it seems like the internet is so quick to support the men who come forward, but then attack the women who do the same.”
You can believe that Heard was not 100% honest and that the Depp-Heard relationship was incredibly dysfunctional and you can buy the whole "mutual abuse" theory AND ALSO recognize that defamation cases have a very high bar and Depp only won this case because of profound misogyny. https://t.co/XbEhIUrqSu
— Jill Filipovic (@JillFilipovic) June 1, 2022
Others took umbrage with the staggering amount of damages Heard was ordered to pay Depp, in the wake of allegations of sexual abuse.
He raped her with a liquor bottle, and now she has to pay him $15 million for talking about it.
— Elizabeth C. McLaughlin (she/her) (@ECMcLaughlin) June 1, 2022
I have to say Johnny Depp's team ending his testimony with the audio of Amber saying "…tell them, I, Johnny Depp, a man, am a victim of domestic violence…and see how many people believe or side with you," was probably one of the most powerful moments thus far
— Emily (@EMMYG214) April 26, 2022
Whatever you think of Amber Heard (and RIP my feed … but I hold space for those who find the answer to that question complicated) the resoundingly punitive verdict in this very public trial will embolden abusers and will terrify survivors. This is a blow to the #MeToo movement.
— Drew Dixon
(@deardrewdixon) June 1, 2022
We are deeply concerned the Depp-Heard decision will set precedent exacerbating barriers victims face in coming forward. The trial and its reception demonstrated a regressive trend of retaliation against those who speak out about violence or abuse perpetrated by those in power.
— WIF (@WomenInFilm) June 1, 2022
Overall, some tweeted how the trial has bigger implications for victims of abuse.
“The Depp/Heard trial has been a clusterf–k from the start and it’s fair to say neither of them come out of it looking brilliant, but not believing victims of abuse and delighting when their trauma is thrown in their face for entertainment? That’s a dangerous precedent to set,” George Griffiths tweeted.
Having prosecuted 1000s of abuse cases, I know every victims’ journey is different
The #DeppHeard relationship was toxic on many levels
The trial may deter victims from coming forward, that’s it’s ultimate legacy
That’s why we need to reassure victims that they will be believed
— nazir afzal (@nazirafzal) June 1, 2022
Precedent is now set in the US that even if you don’t name your abuser in a piece of writing and have evidence of abuse, you can be sued for defamation and lose
— alicia (@nerdjpg) June 1, 2022
Some took the opportunity to compare the trial’s continued spotlight versus the fading circulation of the Uvalde school shooting, asking which is really more important.
The internet has sustained robust attention on a libel lawsuit between two divorced actors for more than SIX WEEKS.
The massacre of 19 American school children stops trending in less than a week. #verdictwatch #Uvalde
— Aisha Sultan (@AishaS) June 1, 2022