An opportunist thief pinched a disabled man’s scooter after he left it outside a club.
The owner of the scooter left the keys in it after taking medication which made him absent-minded.
Hartlepool man Michael Casey, who has more than 200 previous convictions on his record, rode off on the scooter just minutes after it had been left unattended.
Teesside Magistrates’ Court heard he later arranged for it to be returned anonymously.
“The owner of the scooter parked it outside the Victory Club in Hartlepool at about 10.20am,” said Alan Davison, prosecuting.
“The keys were mistakenly left in the scooter by the owner who later said medication he had taken had made him forgetful.
“At about 10.40am CCTV footage shows Casey getting on the scooter and riding it away.
“This was on May 1, and the scooter was returned anonymously to its owner, albeit it had suffered some damage, on May 9.
“When interviewed by police, Casey made no comment.”
Casey, 37, formerly of South Gate, Hartlepool, admitted theft on May 1.
Earlier this month he was jailed for six months for his part in a stand-off with police during which household items were thrown from a first floor window.
He also climbed onto the roof and threw tiles from it, causing its partial collapse, and are £12,000 damage.
Neil Taylor, defending, said: “The theft of the scooter was opportunistic, he didn’t set out to steal that day.
“It was a mean offence, but Mr Casey did arrange for the scooter to be returned when he found out who owned it.
“He has recently been given six months in prison for other offences.
“It may be this offence doesn’t cross the custody threshold, or if it does, the overall sentence would not have been any longer had everything been dealt with at the same time.”
The bench ordered Casey to pay £200 compensation to his victim.