Johnny Depp and Amber Heard Split, Legal Turmoil: What We Know So Far

A roller-coaster romance. In the few days since Amber Heard filed for divorce from Johnny Depp, things have escalated pretty quickly. Startling details of the pair’s rocky marriage began to emerge almost immediately after the news of the actress’ filing broke. Here’s a recap of everything Us Weekly knows so far about Depp and Heard’s shocking split.

Amber Heard, Johnny Depp
Amber Heard and Johnny Depp attend a screening of 'Black Mass' on Oct. 11, 2015, in London. Mike Marsland/WireImage

Amber Heard Files for Divorce

Heard, 30, filed for divorce from Depp, 52, on Monday, May 23, in the Los Angeles Superior Court after 15 months of marriage. She cited “irreconcilable differences” as the reason for her petition and asked for spousal support from the Alice Through the Looking Glass actor, who later asked that the judge reject the request.

Depp Releases Statement on Divorce

The Pirates of the Caribbean star’s rep told Us Weekly in a statement that he’s looking for a quick resolution to the divorce, which came just days after his mother Betty Sue Palmer’s death.

“Given the brevity of this marriage and the most recent tragic loss of his mother, Johnny will not respond to any of the salacious false stories, gossip, misinformation and lies about his personal life,” the rep said on Thursday, May 26. “Hopefully, the dissolution of this short marriage will be resolved quickly.”

Amber Heard, Johnny Depp
Amber Heard leaves court in L.A. on May 27, 2016. Clint Brewer / Splash News

Heard Accuses Depp of Abuse, Gets a Restraining Order

The Danish Girl actress was granted a temporary domestic violence restraining order against Depp on Friday, May 27. Appearing in court looking somber and bruised, she brought photographic evidence of the alleged abuse in addition to detailing the couple’s tumultuous relationship.

In her declaration for the restraining order, Heard said that she’s “extremely afraid” of Depp, who she alleges has a long history of substance abuse problems. She recounted her April 21 birthday celebration, where, she claims, the actor reportedly showed up “inebriated and high” before allegedly physically abusing her. Heard also detailed a similar incident — in which Depp allegedly “wound up his arm like a baseball pitcher” and chucked a cellphone at her face — that she says occurred on Saturday, May 21, just two days before she officially pulled the plug on their marriage.

Police told Us Weekly that despite the actress’ claims, they saw no evidence for a report when they were called to the couple’s L.A. home on May 21.

Amber Heard, Johnny Depp
Amber Heard and Johnny Depp attend the Art of Elysium Gala on Jan. 9, 2016, in Culver City, CA. Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage

Depp’s Lawyer Responds in Court Papers

Depp’s high-profile celeb divorce attorney, Laura Wasser, asserted that Heard is “attempting to secure” financial gain with her allegations of domestic abuse. “Her current application for a temporary restraining order, along with her financial requests, appears to be in response to the negative media attention she received earlier this week after filing for divorce,” the lawyer wrote in court papers, adding, “Amber is a successful model and actress who earns her own income and is capable of supporting herself.”

Depp’s Ex and Daughter Defend Him

Lily-Rose Depp defended the Edward Scissorhands actor on Instagram on Sunday, May 29, with a throwback photo of herself and her father along with a sweet message. “My dad is the sweetest most loving person I know,” the 17-year-old model wrote. “He’s been nothing but a wonderful father to my little brother and I, and everyone who knows him would say the same.”

Hours earlier, Lily-Rose’s mother, Vanessa Paradis, who was in a 14-year relationship with Depp until 2012, reportedly wrote a letter to defend the father of her two children. “He is a sensitive, loving and loved person, and I believe with all my heart, that these recent allegations being made are outrageous,” the French actress and singer, 43, wrote in a letter obtained by TMZ. “In all the years I have known Johnny, he has never been physically abusive with me and this looks nothing like the man I lived with for 14 wonderful years.”

Johnny Depp and Vanessa Paradis
Johnny Depp and Vanessa Paradis at the The Kodak Theater in Hollywood, California, in 2004 Jeff Vespa/WireImage

Several stars also spoke out following the allegations, including The Walking Dead’s Laurie Holden and Depp’s Tourist costar Paul Bettany.

“I, for one, am going to see Johnny Depp’s new movie. His personal life is just that. Personal. No one knows the real truth so just zip it,” Holden, 46, wrote on Twitter, while Bettany, 45, tweeted that Depp is the “sweetest, kindest, gentlest man that I’ve ever known. Just saying.”

Friend Claims That Depp Was ‘Manipulated’ and ‘Set Up’ by Heard

Later on Sunday, Depp’s close friend Doug Stanhope wrote an explosive op-ed, in which he claimed that Depp told him and another pal that Heard threatened to blackmail him.

“We assumed initially that his dour mood was because of his mother’s death the day before. But he opened up in the most vulnerable of ways that it was not only his mother, but that Amber was now going to leave him, threatening to lie about him publicly in any way and every possible duplicitous way if he didn’t agree to her terms” the comic wrote in a column published by The Wrap. “Blackmail is what I would imagine other people might put it, including the manner in which he is now being vilified.”

Heard Denies “Unequivocally False” Blackmail Claims

The Rum Diary actress’ lawyer, Peter Sample, wrote a follow-up letter to The Wrap after Depp’s pal Stanhope claimed that Heard was planning to blackmail the actor. “Allegations against Ms. Heard are absolutely and unequivocally false,” he wrote on Monday, May 30, adding that the comedian’s op-ed “has no basis in reality and is nothing but the typical celebrity muckraking for profit.”

Amber Heard
Amber Heard Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic

Heard’s Lawyers Blast Depp for Discrediting Her Claims

On Tuesday, May 31, Heard’s attorney Samantha F. Spector and co-counsel Joseph P. Koenig slammed the Sweeney Todd actor and his team for discrediting her domestic abuse allegations.

In a statement to Us Weekly, they said, “As the result of Amber’s decision to decline giving an initial statement to the LAPD, her silence has been used against her by Johnny’s team. Amber did not provide a statement to the LAPD in an attempt to protect her privacy and Johnny’s career. Johnny’s team has forced Amber to give a statement to the LAPD to set the record straight as to the true facts, as she cannot continue to leave herself open to the vicious false and malicious allegations that have infected the media. Amber has suffered through years of physical and psychological abuse at the hands of Johnny.” The lawyers concluded their statement, which can be read in full here, with, “Amber is the victim. Amber is a hero.”

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