A police helicopter crew used heat seeking equipment to track down a thief who was found with a number of stolen items on him.
Gareth Heaton tried to evade arrest by hiding in a skip at a council recycling centre, magistrates in Blackpool were told.
Heaton, 45, of Alpine Close, Lostock Hall, near Preston, was in the centre of Lytham equipped with two torches and screwdrivers, the court heard.
When he was found in the skip by police officers, alerted by their helicopter colleagues, two football medals and computer RAM cards were found on him.
Heaton admitted charges of theft and going equipped for theft.
He was put on a three month curfew and told to pay £145 costs by magistrates.