Amber Heard dated Elon Musk while trying to reconcile with Johnny Depp, the couple’s former talent agent tested Wednesday in Depp’s $50m defamation case against his ex-wife.
Christian Carino, an agent at Creative Artists Agency who had represented Depp and Heard, said that Heard had “spent time” with Musk, the Tesla car and SpaceX aerospace company owner while she sought to resurrect her relationship with Depp in 2016, the jury heard at Fairfax county court, Virginia, where the trial is taking place.
This was two months after she had made allegations of domestic violence against Depp, the Pirates of the Caribbean actor, and the couple had separated, the court heard.
“You told me a thousand times you were just filling space,” Carino texted Heard about Musk in 2017. “You weren’t in love with him.” Seeking Carino’s advice on Depp, Heard texted: “God, I miss him.”
In another exchange, Heard texted Carino: “I hate it that yet again a man lets me fall on the spikes by myself.” Carino responded: “If you don’t like your personal life being in the press, don’t date famous men. You could stop that if you stop dating uber-famous people.”
The agent also tested that he never saw Depp abuse Heard or saw injuries on Heard, but that his accusations against him had negatively affected his career.
“People do not want to know that someone they look up to is in litigation,” Carino said.
A year earlier, the agent arranged for Heard to meet with Depp at a friend’s house in San Francisco, despite Heard’s temporary restraining order against Depp still being in force, on condition she would never accuse him of violating the order. The estranged couple, Carino said, spoke for hours “inches apart” on the patio before shifting their location to a hotel, where an argument began.
The testimony came after three Los Angeles police officers who responded to a 911 call on 21 May 2016 told the court they did not see any evidence of physical harm on Amber Heard who, six days later, sought a restraining order against Depp citing domestic violence against her that night.
Officer William Gatlin, one of the dispatched officers to the Eastern Columbia building in downtown Los Angeles, where Depp owned five penthouses, testified that when officers arrived, the female at the residence refused to cooperate and showed no signs of physical injury.
“Based upon her refusal to give any statement on what had occurred and at the time we did not observe verifiable injuries to her,” Gatlin said. Another woman in the apartment, Gatlin said, had told the officers “everything was fine”.
Officer Tyler Hadden, one of the officers who responded earlier that evening, acknowledged that Heard had been crying and was red-faced. “Just because I see a female with pink cheeks and pink eyes doesn’t mean something happened,” Hadden said in a deposition.
The officers have tested that Depp was not at the penthouse when they arrived and recorded the incident as “verbal argument only” in the logs. They tested they were not aware of who Amber Heard was, or that she was married to Depp. Neither Heard nor anyone at the penthouse complex had been willing to tell them who Heard’s husband was.
Later that May, Heard filed for divorce and went to a Los Angeles courthouse to seek a temporary restraining order against Depp, showing up with a clear mark on her face which she claimed Depp had inflicted on the night in question.
The pictures taken outside the court, together with Heard’s allegations, Depp claims, marked the start of his career and reputation unraveling. The 58-year-old actor says he never hit Heard, her allegations of domestic violence are contrived, and it was she who perpetrated violence during their marriage.
Heard’s lawyers have yet to make their case for jurors. Depp claims that he was defamed when Heard wrote an op-ed piece in The Washington Post in 2018 referring to herself as “a public figure representing domestic abuse”.
The trial continues.