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The stories of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard continue to break, with more reports of Johnny’s longtime abuse on the one hand, and big-name stars coming out in his defence on the other. Unless it hits a courtroom and the hearing becomes public, we might never know exactly what went on. But one person came close.

Johnny and Amber’s friend iO Tillett Wright wrote an open letter posted on Refinery29. As you may recall, Wright is the person who called 911 in May, as Depp allegedly assaulted Heard while she was on the phone. The letter is a tough, heartbreaking read, but well worth the investment.

Wright says she “called 911 because [Amber] never would, and Amber “wanted to believe that the behavior wasn’t going to last.” She spoke of when the violence started and how it escalated, seeing a bloody pillow, “the busted lip and the clumps of hair on the floor.”

She points out that Johnny was her friend too, a person she loved very much. “A person I had once referred to as a brother. A person who came to my rescue in my darkest hour, who I have credited with saving my own life, who I lived with for a year by his invitation while I healed and worked. I knew him to be soft and gentle, with a temper and a dark side, but a golden heart. I didn’t want to believe it either, until I saw the wreckage.”

She continues, “When you call someone your brother, you also commit to calling them out when they are wrong.” Because while her own heart ached for Johnny, “the bottom, unequivocal line is, nothing [Amber] ever could have said or done deserves what she describes as him dragging her up the stairs by the hair, punching her in the back of the head, choking her until she almost passed out, and smashing his forehead into her nose until it almost broke.”

Wright’s powerful, moving piece sadly illustrates the issues that can arise in cases of domestic abuse. Is Johnny, in many respects, a good man? Maybe. Did he and Amber love each other? Probably. Did he assault her several times to the point where she finally had to escape? Why is that one so hard to believe?

There are a lot of questions here for sure, but for anyone who scoffed at Amber’s accusations, you might want to rethink your stance. Or, at the very least, have doubts.
 
More, so much more, on the Depp/Heard saga right here: