A bright-eyed student who graduated from one of Sydney’s most elite private schools allegedly fell into the grips of a devastating ice and heroin addiction before his mother was arrested accused of stabbing him in the skull.
Hugo Ball, 22, stumbled into his $3.1million Bellevue Hill mansion in Sydney’s east about 1.40am on Sunday – three hours after his 11pm curfew and ‘acting erratically while walking around incoherently’, a court heard.
His mother Samantha Palmer, 55, had been drinking in the living room prior to the alleged altercation, and is accused of stabbing her son several times, including in the base of his skull.
She was seen yelling ‘Jamie, Jamie, darling’ and ‘I love you Jamie’ as he was taken away in a stretcher for life-saving surgery and she was arrested by police.
Ms Palmer’s lawyer Darren Emmery told Parramatta Bail Court that Ball had fallen into the grips of a ice, heroin and valium addiction after graduating from $33,000-a-year elite Sydney private school Scots College in 2015.
Ball appeared a keen rugby player at school-level during his early teenage years, proudly sharing his achievements to social media while also cheering on the Sydney Roosters and New South Wales team during State of Origin.
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A bright eyed student who graduated from one of Sydney’s most elite private schools allegedly fell into the grips of a devastating ‘ice and heroin addiction’ before his mother was arrested accused of stabbing him in the skull. Pictured: Hugo Ball
Ball’s focus appeared to shift from sport to music festivals and parties, as he posted less about his on-field exploits and more about his nights out in Sydney partying with friends
Samantha Palmer, 55, (pictured) was arrested after her son was found stab wounds at their home at Bellevue Hill in Sydney’s eastern suburbs at 1.30am on Saturday
As a budding rugby player with the world at his feet, Ball set his sights on MMA after school, showing a particular interest in Conor McGregor and his career.
He also shared posts appearing to mock Knox Grammar School – an equally prestigious Sydney college.
In the years to follow, Ball’s focus appeared to shift from sport to music festivals and parties, as he posted less about his on-field exploits and more about his nights out in Sydney partying with friends.
One picture shared to Ball’s social media profiles shortly after his 2015 graduation featured him sitting shirtless on the ground as two police officers stood over him.
One of the officers appeared to be writing something in a book as festival goers milled around and Ball rested his head in his hands.
Ball appeared a keen football player at school-level over the course of several years, proudly sharing his achievements to social media while also cheering on the Sydney Roosters and New South Wales team during State of Origin
One picture shared to Ball’s social media profiles shortly after his 2015 graduation featured him sitting shirtless on the ground as two police officers stood over him
Hugo Ball, 22, (pictured left) was found with multiple stab wounds after an alleged dispute with his mother Samantha Palmer, 55, at their Bellevue Hill home in Sydney’s East
Several other posts reference marijuana from as early as 2015. Two years later, he shared an update to friends and family warning of a random breath test station set up on a local street, along with two emojis of pigs.
By mid 2018, Ball shared several photographs taken during a trip to Papua New Guinea, including one smiling with young children he met while overseas.
The trip appears to be his most recent.
Ball began advertising his services for casual labouring work in February 2019, asking his friends and family to let him know if they had any temporary work for as little as one week at a time available.
His relationship with his mother and stepfather appears to have been weighed down by the pressures of his alleged drug use, and culminated into the physical ordeal in the early hours of Saturday.
As Palmer was arrested and escorted from the home, she repeatedly told Ball, who was suffering life-threatening injuries, how much she loved him.
She could be heard screaming: ‘I love you’ and ‘I’m the mother of this child for God’s sake,’ as she was led away.
Police have applied for an interim apprehended violence order to be taken out to prohibit Palmer from contacting Ball. The matter is listed for mention in court on Monday.
Palmer appeared in Parramatta Bail Court via AVL on Sunday facing a domestic violence charge of wounding her son with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, The Daily Telegraph reported.
The court heard Palmer had been in the lounge room when Hugo – who allegedly has a history of problems with heroin, valium and ice – returned home.
‘He’s come home and is acting erratically and he is walking around incoherently. He tells her that he has committed a murder,’ Palmer’s lawyer Mr Emmery told the court.
The family have a ‘history of violence’, the court was told.
He also shared posts appearing to mock Knox Grammar School – an equally prestigious Sydney college. The posts amounted to a healthy rivalry between the two schools as Ball shared several posts proudly supporting his former campus
Ball was studying at Bond University at the time, but they collected him and brought him home to Sydney after he was twice admitted at Robina Hospital
Ms Palmer screamed ‘I love you’ to her son as she was led away by police in handcuffs
Mr Emmery told the court Palmer had no previous convictions and described the entire case as ‘unusual’.
‘You don’t have an accused person like this all of a sudden commit a crime like this… a mother in her 50s with no criminal history,’ he said.
Palmer and her husband James Tilley, Ball’s step-father, were recently granted an exemption to travel to the Gold Coast without quarantining at the height of the Covid pandemic in June.
Ball was studying at Bond University at the time, but they collected him and brought him home to Sydney after he was twice admitted at Robina Hospital.
The magistrate said he wanted to verify all of the claims made by Palmer’s legal team.
Mr Emmery withdrew his bail application and it was formally opposed by the prosecution on the basis of Ball’s health and safety.
The 22-year-old remains in hospital in a stable condition after suffering several potentially fatal stab wounds.
The 22-year-old Scots College Graduate was was treated at the scene before being carried out in a stretcher (pictured above) to St Vincent’s Hospital in a serious condition
The 22-year-old remains in hospital in a stable condition after suffering several potentially fatal stab wounds
Palmer allegedly attacked Hugo (pictured right) after she had been drinking and he arrived home past his curfew from a night out and said he had ‘committed a murder’