Some jurors snoozed during Johnny Depp’s defamation trial against Amber Heard, said the court stenographer who recorded the proceeding spanning six weeks.
On Monday, stenographer Judy Bellinger revealed to Law&Crime Network that some jurors fought the temptation to doze off, specifically during the video depositions.
“There were a few jurors who were dozing off,” stated Bellinger, elaborating that the napping jurors were in the front and back rows. “And it was tough.”
“There were a lot of video depositions, and they would just sit there, and all of a sudden, I’d see their head drop,” she continued.
Bellinger also added that the most committed juror was an alternate and did not have a say on the final ruling. (For context: Alternates replace a juror who can’t stay in the trial due to illness and emergencies, yet don’t weigh on the verdict except if called to step in for a juror.)
“Unfortunately, the one alternate that was on there, she was probably the one that listened the most,” the stenographer stated.
“I watched her facial expressions. She was very deeply into every word that was being said. I thought she would’ve made a great juror, and she did not get to see it to the end. She was paying close attention.”
The jury was composed of seven persons in favor of Depp on June 1, discovering that Heard willfully and maliciously defamed her ex-husband when she published her op-ed in the Washington Post in 2018 narrating her encounters as a domestic abuse survivor. Heard wants to appeal the ruling.
In the interview, Bellinger objected to hearsays that she went to a party with Depp and his legal team after the closing arguments on May 27, stating that she had forgotten her recording equipment with data of the day’s trial in the courthouse and Depp’s lawyers got a hold of it and had her pick it up at their hotel.
Bellinger met Depp at the hotel and captured a photo with him that has gotten viral.
“I was there for probably less than 10 minutes, and he just hugged me and thanked me again,” she stated. “And I had a couple of other people there, and I got my equipment, and I came out.”
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