A man stole a patient’s coat and £100 cash from a hospital waiting room.
Wayne French took the £150 Berghaus coat, which had the money inside, from the A&E room of South Tyneside District Hospital just after midnight on Thursday.
The owner was outside smoking when the 35-year-old struck and saw him leaving the building.
When the victim went back inside and realised his coat was gone he raised the alarm.
French, of Beach Road, South Shields, was captured on CCTV and arrested.
He pleaded guilty to theft at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court.
Stan Sudworth, prosecuting, said: “The victim was in A&E waiting to be seen about a facial injury. He spoke to the defendant inside, but didn’t know him.
“He went outside for a smoke and left his coat, which cost £150 inside, there were keys in the pocket and £100 cash.
“French left and the coat was gone.”
Geoffrey Forrester, defending, said: “He was given a community order last month for an assault.
“This is a completely different type of offence for which he pleaded guilty immediately.”
Magistrates gave French a community order for two months between 7pm and 7am.
He was la so ordered to pay £250 compensation and a £60 victim surcharge.