I get the impression that hoodies have a connotation different in the UK than in the US.
Possibly, although the furore directed at the hoodie in the UK at the moment is because of a desire to target the behaviour of a subsection of the population, which is difficult to do on any socio-economic criteria as it'll be deemed discriminatory (which it is). In this case, the targeted group are known colloquially as chavs, scallies or neds (depending on geography). Generally lower/working class, poorly educated, unemploy(ed/able) and young, they wear a uniform of fake designer labels and sportswear
. Oh, and hooded tops. They've always been around, just lately the media seems to have jumped on them (for lack of any more worthwhile youth culture), either painting them as the demon downfall of British society or parading them as loveable scamps, of which they are neither. As for hoodies, most people under the age of 30 own at least one. This recent connotation between hooded tops and criminal behaviour is media-fuelled and did not exist before. It is true that large gangs of scally kids roam shopping centres at the weekend in tracksuits and hoodies, although it is disturbing that it looks as if this may lead to widespread acceptance of laws which make it illegal to mask your face from recording equipment in one of the most heavily monitored societies in the world.