STEVE HELBER/POOL/AFP/Getty Amber Heard
A clinical and forensic psychologist who evaluated Amber Heard has tested that the actress showed signs of borderline and histrionic personality disorders, but not post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The psychologist was hired by Depp’s legal team.
On day nine of Johnny Depp’s defamation trial against Heard, 36, in Fairfax, Virginia, Dr. Shannon Curry told the court that she was asked to “provide a psychological evaluation of Ms. Heard” back in October 2021, but was never asked to do so for Depp, 58.
dr Curry reviewed “all the case documents” as part of her evaluation of the Aquaman actress, as well as Heard’s medical records (including for “mental-health treatment”), audio and video recordings, photos and “multiple witness statements.” She said she met with Heard “on two separate dates,” Dec. 10 and Dec. 17, 2021, for about 12 hours total face time.
“The results of Ms. Heard’s evaluation supported two diagnoses: borderline personality disorder and histrionic personality disorder,” Dr. Curry said.
dr Curry also said she saw no evidence of PTSD in her evaluation of Heard but noted, “Just because somebody doesn’t have PTSD doesn’t mean that they weren’t harmed psychologically by whatever is being alleged — in this case, Ms. Heard is alleging that she was psychologically harmed and that she suffered PTSD because of abuse that she alleges occurred by Mr. Depp.”
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STEVE HELBER/POOL/AFP via Getty; EVELYN HOCKSTEIN/POOL/AFP via Getty Johnny Depp; Amber Heard
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Mayo Clinic defines borderline personality disorder as “a mental health disorder that impacts the way you think and feel about yourself and others, causing problems functioning in everyday life. It includes self-image issues, difficulty managing emotions and behavior, and a pattern of unstable relationships.”
“With borderline personality disorder, you have an intense fear of abandonment or instability, and you may have difficulty tolerating being alone. Yet inappropriate anger, impulsiveness and frequent mood swings may push others away, even though you want to have loving and lasting relationships, ” the group adds.
Histrionic personality disorder, according to Mayo Clinic, is a condition “characterized by dramatic, overly emotional or unpredictable thinking or behavior.” In her testimony, Dr. Curry said that those with the condition can tend to take on a “victim” or “princess” role with false stories.
According to the clinic, it can manifest in “constantly seeking attention”; being “excessively emotional, dramatic or sexually provocative to gain attention”; “speak(ing) dramatically with strong opinions, but few facts or details to back them up” and more.
dr Curry said in court Tuesday that “there was information that supported” her conclusions in her evaluation of Heard “from multiple sources,” including a test the psychologist conducted herself and “evidence of those diagnoses in her records and in her self-report.”
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During cross-examination, an attorney for Heard asked the psychologist whether she was board certified. dr Curry responded that she is not.
The psychologist was also asked about having dinner and drinks at Depp’s home before she was placed on retainer. dr Curry said the meeting was between herself and the actor’s legal team, not Depp himself. She also said it wasn’t her job to evaluate Depp in this case.
“Don’t you think that’s a little odd that you’re getting interviewed by Mr. Depp to decide whether you’re going to testify adversely against Amber Heard?” the actress’s attorney asked, to which Dr. Curry responded, “I was interviewed by the legal team.”
JIM LO SCALZO/POOL/AFP via Getty; JIM WATSON/POOL/AFP via Getty Johnny Depp; Amber Heard
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Depp is suing Heard for defamation over a 2018 op-ed she wrote for the Washington Post about surviving domestic violence, though she never mentioned Depp by name in the article. the Pirates of the Caribbean actor originally filed the $50 million lawsuit in March 2019.
During opening statements earlier this month, Heard’s attorney Ben Rottenborn said evidence will show she suffered domestic abuse by Depp that “took many forms,” including physical, emotional, verbal and psychological, as well as “sexual violence at the hands of Depp.” A spokesperson for Depp denies the allegations, calling them “fictitious.”
Back in November 2020, Depp lost his highly publicized UK libel lawsuit case against British tabloid The Sun for calling him a “wife-beater.” The court upheld the outlet’s claims as being “substantially true” and Heard tested to back up the claims. In March 2021, his attempt to overturn the decision was overruled.
Heard has not yet taken the stand in this trial.
If you are experiencing domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or go to thehotline.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.