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Johnny Depp fans unleash hundreds of negative reviews on psychiatrist after he testified for Amber Heard

Supermodel Kate Moss due to testify on Wednesday


Dr David Spiegel testifies during actor Johnny Depp's defamation case against ex-wife, actor Amber Heard. Picture: Reuters

Dr David Spiegel testifies during actor Johnny Depp's defamation case against ex-wife, actor Amber Heard. Picture: Reuters

Dr David Spiegel testifies during actor Johnny Depp's defamation case against ex-wife, actor Amber Heard. Picture: Reuters

Johnny Depp fans have inundated a psychiatrist with negative reviews after he testified on behalf of Amber Heard at the couple’s defamation trial.

Dr David Spiegel took the witness stand on Monday and gave damning testimony about Mr Depp’s mental state, saying he has “behaviours that are consistent with someone that both has substance-use disorder as well as behaviours of someone who is a perpetrator of intimate-partner violence”.

Soon after, a torrent of negative reviews cropped up on Dr Spiegel’s page on the medical website WebMD. Many of the one-star reviews referred directly to the trial, with one saying that “Dr Spiegel needs looking into after today’s performance! He looks and sounds like he is the one who needs psychiatric help”.

Another reviewer said the psychiatrist “called my boyfriend Johnny a stupid pirate”.

His Google page also faced a deluge of scathing reviews in connection to the trial, with reviewers saying that he’s a “terrible doctor”, that he was “very arrogant and looked like he was having some kind of problem” and that he “should be avoided at all times because he has been unprofessional”. Another said his “vibe” was “scary”.

The vast majority of the reviews on his Google page were later removed.

On WebMD, a small number of reviewers defended Mr Spiegel.

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“All these one-star reviews are not related to patient care,” one person said. “They are opinions of viewers watching the Johnny Depp trial. Maybe find another place to vent your frustrations.”

The Independent has reached out to Dr Spiegel for comment.

In his testimony on Monday, Dr Spiegel acknowledged that he did not interview Mr Depp directly, because his two requests to do so were denied by the actor’s lawyers.

Instead, he drew conclusions after reviewing Mr Depp’s depositions and other materials in the case, saying he saw many signs of impairment from excessive use of drugs and alcohol.

Asked if he believes Mr Depp’s substance abuse impaired his ability to perform as an actor, Dr Spiegel said he is aware of Mr Depp using an earpiece for lines and saying that he did a movie “entirely wasted”.

He said he believes Mr Depp’s “thinking rate” is down and his attention and memory are impaired, noting that drugs and alcohol “will make us disinhibited and will make us act out, in a lot of different ways”, including “intimate partner violence”.

“We all get angry with people ... But when our brain is functioning well, we don’t act it out,” he said.

“When we have the effects of alcohol, we have disinhibition ... so we can no longer interpret what’s in front of you, what’s right and wrong, what we should act on and what we shouldn’t act on.”

Mr Spiegel described combining substance abuse with intimate partner violence as “playing with fire”.

In a tense cross-examination, Dr Spiegel and Mr Depp’s lawyer sparred over the American Psychiatric Association’s Goldwater Rule, which says that psychiatrists should not give professional opinions about public figures that they have not examined in person.

British supermodel Kate Moss is expected to give evidence on Wednesday in Johnny Depp’s defamation case against his former wife Amber Heard, sources say.

Depp’s lawyers reportedly hope testimony from Moss, 48, who dated the actor in the 1990s, will pour ice cold water on Heard’s courtroom suggestion that he is a domestic abuser.

His legal team were seen appearing to celebrate when Heard, 36, mentioned Moss in testimony, as she described hearing a rumour that Mr Depp had pushed the model down a flight of stairs.

A source close to Depp said Moss is scheduled to appear via videolink.

They believe she will say he “caught her and tended to after she tripped on stairs in flip flops during a vacation in Jamaica”.

Earlier on Tuesday, Virginia’s Fairfax County Circuit Court was told Heard was “on the precipice of a meteoric rise” before the negative press caused by allegedly defamatory comments made by Depp’s legal team.

Entertainment industry expert Kathryn Arnold said she believed the actress lost out on up to $50million after her claims of abuse by her former partner were labelled a “hoax” by Adam Waldman in 2020.

Giving testimony in the final days of the six-week defamation case, Ms Arnold said Depp’s multiple public lawsuits and “erratic behaviour” contributed to his career decline before the publication of Heard’s article which is the subject of the libel trial.

The piece had had “zero” effect on his reputation or damages.

Ms Arnold added: “Amber has had a pretty long career for someone who is pretty young still...she had a consistent working actor’s career.

“Her career was following a very nice steady rise and was on the precipice of a meteoric rise with Aquaman and Aquaman 2, prior to the (defamatory) statements.”

She added that the resulting backlash online had made it “hard for (brands) to work with Amber on any level because of the negativity brought to their product or service or film” and that the campaign was ongoing.

“In the public it’s been very negative, in the industry they like her work but they can’t work with her right now because every time her name is mentioned, the negativity flares up again.”

Ms Arnold said that despite questions over Heard not being hired for Aquaman 2, the film’s director James Wan and star Jason Momoa remained “committed” to the actress.

She added that Heard was “comparable” to actors including Momoa, Wonder Woman star Gal Gadot and Zendaya, all of whom have gone on to secure lucrative contracts with brands and other film and television.

Closing arguments in the case are expected to be given on Friday.

Jurors have previously heard multiple allegations of both physical and sexual abuse against Depp, with testimony provided by people including Heard’s sister Whitney, friend Raquel Pennington, and another of his former partners, Ellen Barkin.

In video deposition played to the court last week, Ms Barkin claimed Depp was controlling during their short relationship.

Several famous faces appeared on the initial witness lists for the trial, including Tesla founder Elon Musk and actors Paul Bettany and James Franco, though none have been called on.

The defamation trial between Mr Depp and Ms Heard is now in its sixth and final week at the courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia. Mr Depp’s suit claims Ms Heard defamed him in a December 2018 op-ed published in The Washington Post titled “I spoke up against sexual violence — and faced our culture’s wrath. That has to change”.

In her op-ed, Ms Heard wrote that “like many women, I had been harassed and sexually assaulted by the time I was of college age. But I kept quiet — I did not expect filing complaints to bring justice. And I didn’t see myself as a victim”.

“Then two years ago, I became a public figure representing domestic abuse, and I felt the full force of our culture’s wrath for women who speak out,” she added at the time.

While Mr Depp isn’t named in the piece, his legal team argues that it contains a “clear implication that Mr Depp is a domestic abuser”, which they say is “categorically and demonstrably false”. Mr Depp is seeking damages of “not less than $50m”.

Ms Heard has filed a $100m counterclaim against Mr Depp for nuisance and immunity from his allegations.

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