A teenager who admitted killing a pensioner in the most serious crime committed during last summer's street disturbances had previously taken part in a school trip to watch a police training exercise combating petrol bomb-throwing rioters.
Darrell Desuze, known as Smokey, was named yesterday after a judge lifted an order banning his identification, arguing it was in the public interest. The then 16-year-old was part of a mob which smashed and stole from shops during violence in Ealing, west London, last August.
It emerged the youth, who admitted the manslaughter of Richard Mannington Bowes by punching him to the ground as he tried to put out a fire in his dustbin, had watched the riot simulation the previous year at a training centre in Gravesend, Kent. Desuze was said to have been impressed by the sight of officers dodging flaming missiles and bricks.
The teenager was among a group of boys considering a future police career and, according to a school report of the day, was said to have found it a "a lot more interesting than he had originally imagined".
Mr Mannington Bowes, 68, suffered fatal brain injuries when he was punched. The emergency services struggled to reach the retired accountant who was bleeding and unconscious by the time help arrived. He died three days later in hospital.
Brian Altman QC, prosecuting, said his killer had been summoned to Ealing from Harrow by a text message anticipating trouble.
Although he later returned and even helped move Mr Mannington Bowes, concern was short lived, said Mr Altman. "Instead of calling an ambulance or summoning any of the policemen around he was in minutes rejoining the riot," he added.
Desuze, who will be sentenced next month, also pleaded guilty at Inner London Crown Court to violent disorder and had previously admitted burglary at William Hill, Tesco Express, Blockbusters and Fatboys Thai restaurant during the riot. His mother, Lavinia Desuze, 31, will stand trial on Monday accused of perverting the course of justice by destroying the clothes he wore.