FACT CHECK: Did An Amber Alert Go Off During The Closing Arguments Of The Depp-Heard Trial?

May 31st, 2022
Actor Amber Heard returns to the courtroom for the defamation trial against her, at the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Fairfax, Virginia, on April 27, 2022. - US actor Johnny Depp sued his ex-wife Amber Heard for libel in Fairfax County Circuit Court after she wrote an op-ed piece in The Washington Post in 2018 referring to herself as a "public figure representing domestic abuse." (Photo by JONATHAN ERNST / POOL / AFP) (Photo by JONATHAN ERNST/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

A post shared on Facebook claims an Amber Alert was issued and could be heard during the closing arguments of the defamation suit between actor Johnny Depp and his ex-wife Amber Heard.

Verdict: Misleading

The alert heard during the trial was a weather alert, not an Amber Alert.

Fact Check: 

Depp and Heard have filed dueling defamation suits against one another, according to The New York Times. They both allege the other has ruined their career and reputation with false statements and accusations, the outlet reported. The trail is taking place in Fairfax County, Virginia.

A post shared on Facebook claims an Amber Alert went off during Heard’s closing arguments. The post includes a video of Heard’s lawyer presenting his client’s case before he is interrupted by an alarm going off around the courtroom. The judge can be heard remarking that the sound “appears to be an Amber Alert.”

“Johnny Depp trial- Amber Heard’s closing argument interrupted by Amber Alert,” reads the Facebook post’s caption. The Amber Alert is an emergency broadcast system that disseminates information about a missing person.

The sound, however, was not an Amber Alert. Rather, it was a storm alert, according to People.com. Law & Crime Network likewise clarified that the sound was a weather alert.

 

“Courtroom Moment: An alert that was mentioned as an ‘AMBER Alert’ while #AmberHeard‘s attorney delivered closing arguments was actually a storm warning,” reads a tweet from the news outlet.

“The weather alert was a Wireless Emergency Alert from the National Weather Service,” Crystal Santos, spokesperson for the Fairfax County of Public Affairs told AFP Fact Check. “This was not an Amber alert, which comes from the State Police for things such as missing persons.” (RELATED: Did Shared Services Canada Send This Memo Banning Employees From Using The Phrase ‘Let’s Go Brandon’?)

The Virginia State Police, which can issue Amber Alerts, did not put out any type of alert on May 27 on its Facebook or Twitter accounts. There are also no news reports suggesting an alert had been issued in Virginia May 27, though an alert was issued the day before for a 15-year-old who had gone missing, according to the Independent-Messenger.

Elias Atienza

Fact Check Reporter