According to reports, the seven-person panel is confused about one of the eight questions they must answer when determining whether the Aquaman star ‘defamed’ her ex-husband when writing the 2018 op-ed for The Washington Post.
Reportedly, they have to conclude whether the written piece’s headline – which stated, ‘I spoke up against sexual violence – and faced our culture’s wrath’ – is false.
Find out more about the jury’s ‘question’ in the Depp V Heard trial below…
It’s understood Judge Penney Azcarate clarified that the jury must consider the headline alone and not the entire article. In answering their query, she said: “The statement is the headline and not the entire op-ed.”
The jurors are reportedly considering whether two phrases within the written piece could also be classed as ‘defamatory’ toward Depp.
In the op-ed’s first passage, Heard penned that ‘two years ago, I became a public figure representing domestic abuse, and I felt the full force of our culture’s wrath’.
In the second passage, she continued, writing ‘I had the rare vantage point of seeing, in real-time, how institutions protect men accused of abuse’.
The verdict form that was reportedly given to the jurors requires that they consider whether the headline and these passages were about the Pirates of the Caribbean star and if they had ‘defamatory implication’.
Reportedly, they also have to contemplate whether Heard acted with ‘actual malice’. This would require ‘clear and convincing evidence’ that she acted with a ‘reckless disregard’ for the truth, or knew what she was writing was ‘false’.
In the $50million defamation case, the jury must come to a unanimous decision.
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