it's the people, pure and simple

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And that is the good part.
The Olympic ambassador

Eighteen-year-old Chelsea Ives, a volunteer ambassador for next year's Olympic Games, was turned in by her own mother who spotted her on TV footage of the riots. "How can you sit there and see that and say 'that's OK'? We were watching people lose their homes and businesses," Ives' mother told The Telegraph. "As parents we had to say; 'She can't get away with that.'" Ives, who previously met with London's mayor as part of her ambassador duties, now faces charges of throwing a brick at a cop car and burglary. She pleaded not guilty.

The youngest suspect?

An 11-year-old girl was reportedly given a 9-month "referral order" after witnesses said she hurled rocks at two store windows during the riots, according to the Daily Mail. The girl lives in a foster home, and the Daily Mail says she refused to apologize to the judge who sentenced her.

The ballerina-turned-looter

A 17-year-old ballerina turned herself in after images of her looting were published in a newspaper and broadcast on TV, according to the Telegraph. The footage showed her taking two televisions from an electronics store.

The straight-A student

Laura Johnson, the 19-year-old daughter of well-to-do parents and a straight-A student at Exeter University, is accused of stealing electronic goods worth thousands of dollars in London. She pleaded not guilty but has a curfew of 7 p.m. and must wear an electronic tag before her court date, according to the Telegraph. Her parents run a marketing firm.

The social worker

University graduate and aspiring social worker Natasha Reid turned herself in when she became overcome by guilt over stealing a TV from a electronics store while on her way to McDonalds during the looting. According to the AP, a judge told 24-year-old Reid she would probably face jail time.

The violin thief

A 19-year-old aspiring musician grabbed a violin from a looted music store before being nabbed by the cops. According to the Daily Mail, he was sentenced to four months in jail.
Sure, it gives the excuse to crack down, but it also militates in favor of cracking back.