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One year after the riots in Bromley
One year after Bromley was caught up in last summer's riots, DAVID MILLS looks back on a night of violence and disorder.
IT was a night that shopkeepers and residents will never forget.
At around 10.30pm on August 8, the violence and looting that was pouring across London spilled into the borough.
As neighbouring Croydon burned, shops in Bromley were indiscriminately smashed up by yobs stealing anything they could from plasma TVs to cigarettes.
Many wore balaclavas, some carried bricks, while one rioter was armed with a knuckle duster.
A walk along East Street the morning after was as good a picture as any in illustrating the aftermath of the rioting.
Richer Sounds was arguably the worst hit, with heaps of glass and even blood from the looters' hands on the floor, such was the ferocity of their attack.
The shop's deputy manager, Dave Runham, said: "I knew within 15 minutes, all we saw was this big mob of kids. It was sickening.
"We could see about 50 people on our CCTV kicking the door in. There was blood on the floor from where they'd cut their hands opening it. It was horrible.
"Everything in the shop had been trashed. They'd ripped the wall mounts (holding the TVs) off.
"It doesn't matter how much security you have, with that kind of mob they're still going to get in.
"The riots was just a little blip. You can't forget it but I don't think it's damaged the shop - if anything it's given us more custom."
RIOTERS BY NUMBERS
91 people arrested in Bromley
32 of those have been sentenced with more still going through the courts and on bail
4,354 suspects were arrested across London
2,724 of these have been charged with 956 imprisoned at a conviction rate of 86 per cent
600 more arrests are expected to be made in the coming months
175,000 hours of CCTV have been viewed by police
360 images from the boroughs of Bromley, Lewisham, Bexley, Greenwich and Southwark are still awaiting identification
Father and son Paul and Richard Johnson, aged 46 and 19, were given suspended prison sentences and ordered to do unpaid work after joining in the riots when they saw the disorder unfold on television at home in Crofton Lane, Orpington.
Perry Dunnett, of Mosul Way, Bromley Common was jailed for 12 months after admitting burglary at Richer Sounds. The 25-year-old handed himself in to tell police he had "dunnett" after spotting his picture in News Shopper. He kindly brought back the Freeview box he had pinched.
When stopped by police in East Street, Dwight Brown, 24, from Bermondsey, got out of his car with a brick in his hand. Officers were forced to spray him with CS gas. Brown is serving a 12 month prison sentence.
The daughter of a millionaire, Laura Johnson, of Sheepcote Lane, Orpington, was jailed for burglary and handling stolen goods at a retail park in Charlton. The 20-year-old former Newstead Wood and St Olave's pupil was one of the most infamous of the rioters given her privileged background.
Richard Groom, 44, of Oakley Road, Bromley, was given a suspended prison sentence and a community order for burglary at Sainsbury's in Hayes. He was caught by an off-duty police officer who was helped by residents and a police cadet.
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