Actor Johnny Depp testified that he never struck his ex-wife Amber Heard or any woman ever.
Depp challened her accusations in a $50 million defamation case to correct the public's perception and stand up for his children.
Depp testifed in a Virginia courtroom that it was a "complete shock" about six years ago when Heard "made some quite heinous and disturbing" allegations that he became violent during their relationship.
"Never did I myself reach the point of striking Ms. Heard in any way, nor have I ever struck any woman in my life," said Depp.
"I felt it my responsibility to stand up not only for myself in that instance but stand up for my children," the "Pirates of the Caribbean" star said.
Depp, 58, alleges Heard, 35, defamed him when she penned a December 2018 opinion piece in the Washington Post about being a survivor of domestic abuse. He filed a $50 million lawsuit against Heard in 2018.
The article never mentioned Depp by name, but Depp lawyer Benjamin Chew told jurors it was clear Heard was referencing the Hollywood leading man. read more
"When the allegations were rapidly circling the globe, telling people that I was a, a drunken, cocaine-fueled menace who beat women — suddenly in my 50s — it’s over,” Depp said. “You’re done"
When asked by his attorney what he had lost and what consequences he faced after the publication of the essay, Depp answered, "Nothing less than everything."
"What did it do to me? What effect did it have on me? I’ll put it to you this way, no matter the outcome of this trial, the second the allegations were made against me … once that happened, I lost then," he said.
According to Depp's account of their relationship, Heard would pick fights and escalate them with demeaning language. He also said that she would sometimes "strike out," whether it was a slap or a shove or throwing something at him.
"It’s hard to explain but the argument would start here but it would roll around and become this circular thing of its own," Depp said. "You’d get back to the beginning … now it’s heightened even more and it’s still circular. There’s no way in or out."
In court filings before the trial, Heard said she hit Depp only in self-defense or in defense of her younger sister, according to The New York Times
Court will resume on Thursday with cross examination with Johnny Depp.
Original article appeared on NBC News and NPR