Amber Heard would regularly throw objects at Johnny Depp including forks, cigarette lighters and cans of Coke, a court has been told.
The Hollywood star’s longstanding security guard has claimed that Mr Depp suffered bullying at the hands of his wife and was the victim in their relationship.
Malcolm Connolly, pictured below, told the High Court that she would frequently pelt him with objects. He also said he had never witnessed the actor hit Ms Amber or seen any of the injuries she claims he inflicted on her.
Mr Connolly was also asked about an alleged violent argument between Mr Depp and Ms Heard while the couple were on a honeymoon trip on the South East Asia Railway in July 2015.
His evidence came in the sixth day of the libel case brought by Mr Depp against The Sun newspaper, its publisher NGN and its executive editor, Dan Wootton, over an online story from April 2018 which described him as a “wife-beater”.
The Pirates of the Carribean star denies 14 alleged incidents of domestic violence being relied on by NGN in its defence against his claim.
In his witness statement Mr Connolly, who has been Mr Depp’s security guard for 16 years, told the court that he had frequently seen Ms Heard throw objects at his employer.
Describing the aftermath of an incident in which Mr Depp claims his wife severed his finger with a vodka bottle after a fight at a rented property in Australia in March 2015, Mr Connolly said he was summoned to the property by the head of security to “extract the boss from the situation”.
Mr Connolly said that as he tried to get Mr Depp into his car the actor told him: “Look at my finger. She’s cut my f***ing finger off. She’s smashed my hand with a vodka bottle.”
Moments later Ms Heard appeared at the door of the house “screaming and crying”.
Mr Connolly told the court: “She was not making a lot of sense – one second she was begging Johnny not to leave the house and then she was screaming at him for running away.
“She was absolutely hysterical. I was worried that she might start throwing objects at Johnny, or at myself, as I had seen her throw objects before.
“For example, I had seen her lob a fork in Johnny’s general direction once; another time I recall she threw a lighter at him, another time a can of Coke. I knew that we needed to get out of there as soon as possible.”
Mr Connolly said he could see Ms Heard’s face “very clearly”, adding: “She did not have any marks on her face or arms. She didn’t look in any physical distress.
“I was much more concerned about Johnny. He was obviously in emotional distress and panicking. He wasn’t that drunk or out of it though and was easily standing on his own and having a conversation.”
The security guard said Mr Depp’s team knew the true cause of his injury would “create extremely bad publicity” and that Jerry Judge, the head of security, suggested they should say at hospital that the actor had injured his finger while slicing onions.
“I thought it was fairly obvious that this was not true given the severity of the injury and suggested we say he jammed it into a car door,” said Mr Connolly.
“However we went with the onion cover story. The specialist didn’t believe us for one second.”
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‘Terrible’ fight during honeymoon
It was alleged in court that there was a violent argument between Mr Depp and Ms Heard while the couple were on a honeymoon trip on the South East Asia Railway in July 2015.
NGN’s barrister, Sasha Wass QC, read out a diary note written by Ms Heard which said: “Our fight was terrible. Johnny… at one point found himself with his shirt wrapped around my neck. I don’t even know how I wound up with this huge, rather annoying knot on the back of my head. F***, I hate that.”
Ms Wass asked where Mr Connolly was on the train, and he said he was “about three or four doors down” from the couple.
The barrister asked: “So, if a fight had taken place at 3.30 in the morning, do you think you would necessarily have known about it?”
Mr Connolly replied: “I would never have known about it.”
No evidence Ms Heard was physically abused
Mr Depp’s lawyers say The Sun article bore the meaning that there was “overwhelming evidence” he assaulted Ms Heard, 34, on a number of occasions and left her “in fear for her life”.
Mr Connolly however said he saw no evidence that Ms Heard was being physically abused by her husband.
He said he had been trained to recognise signs of abuse and intimidation and knew how to read the demeanor of victims of bullying as part of his former position as a prison officer at HMP Pentonville.
In response to being asked why there had been the need to construct different accounts of the finger severing incident – including that Mr Depp had slammed it in a heavy door or cut it off while slicing onions – Mr Connolly said they were “to protect” the Pirates of the Caribbean production the actor was involved in at the time, as well as Ms Heard.
He added that he had “seen it in prison” that “the usual victim pattern is to protect the abuser for some reason, you know the psychological bullying… they fit the same criteria, they never come forward with the information”.
Mr Connolly was asked by Mr Depp’s barrister, David Sherborne, whether he had ever seen the actor physically attack or hit Ms Heard at any time.
He replied: “No – and I wouldn’t tolerate any man striking a woman. No matter who he was, I just wouldn’t tolerate that. Not even if he’s my boss. I don’t care if he’s the Pope.”
Depp is “an unusually kind man”
The court also heard from Mr Depp’s estate manager the private island in the Bahamas where Mr Depp went to detox in December 2014, accompanied by Ms Heard.
NGN’s lawyers claim that during this period Mr Depp was violent towards her.
But Tara Roberts said: “I never saw Johnny – who is an unusually kind man – be violent or aggressiveo with Amber or anyone else.”
After the court was shown a video of Mr Depp slamming a kitchen cabinet door, kicking furniture and shouting at Ms Heard while pouring himself a pint glass of wine, Ms Roberts said she had never seen him that way.
On being shown a photograph of Ms Heard’s face taken on the island, purporting to show bruises beneath her eyes, Mr Roberts said that was not how she appeared during the trip, adding: “I didn’t see that. If she had them [the bruises] I would have seen them.”
Ms Roberts claimed she had seen Ms Heard “screaming and berating” the Hollywood star, calling him “washed up” and “fat” during their stay on the island.
She also said she had seen a “red, swelling gash” on Mr Depp’s nose, and claimed he had told her Ms Heard had thrown a can of lacquer thinner into his face.
In her witness statement Ms Roberts went on to say she saw Ms Heard “lunge at Johnny, clawing, tugging and aggressively pulling him”.
“He continued to stand there yelling at her to stop and leave him alone,” she said. “When he stepped back to leave, her onslaught would start again.”
She added: “During this entire incident, I never saw Johnny hit Amber, or push her back, nor did he physically react to the attacks. She would calm down and hug and apologize.
Then he would say he needs to leave and it would start again.”
Heard emailed friend: “J beat me up pretty good”
A Hollywood stylist told the court that Ms Heard had “no visible” injuries the day after the actress alleges Johnny Depp was violent towards her during a row at their Los Angeles penthouse.
Savannah McMillen said she spent “much of the afternoon and early evening” with Ms Heard, on December 16, 2015 as she prepared to appear on James Corden’s The Late Late Show and could “see clearly” that Ms Heard had no marks, cuts or bruises.
Ms McMillen, who has worked as Mr Depp’s stylist since 2002 and worked as Ms Heard’s stylist during the couple’s relationship, told the court that at no stage did she notice marks or bruising on her face.
Shortly before her scheduled appearance on the Corden show Ms Heard emailed her publicist, Jodi Gottlieb, to say she feared she might have two black eyes. The same day she emailed a friend to say: “J beat me up pretty good.”
After being shown a photograph taken the day before, which appeared to show Ms Heard with a mark on her face, Ms McMillen said: “That’s not how I remember her looking on that day.”
Ms Wass asked why Ms Heard would make allegations of domestic violence against Mr Depp “unless it was true”.
Ms McMillen, who was giving evidence from the US by videolink, replied: “I don’t know the answer to that.”
The case continues.