Nathan Cassidy, 20, smashed his way into an elderly couple's home while they were sleeping and stole a handbag containing £105.
The serial crook, who has 14 previous convictions for 29 crimes, committed the burglary while on a suspended sentence for robbery and handling stolen goods.
However, Cassidy avoided jail by convincing Cambridge Crown Court he would not be able to cope with life behind bars because he is obsessed with cleanliness.
Instead, Judge Gareth Hawkesworth handed Cassidy, of Cambridge, a 12-month sentence in a young offenders' institution suspended for two years.
He was also placed under a two-year supervision order and ordered to undergo mental health treatment.
Judge Hawkesworth said: 'It's clear to me from the psychological report you have a raft of psychological problems that need addressing.'
Mark McDonald, defending Cassidy, told the court his client was not a normal prisoner because of his problems with OCD.
'Because of psychological problems, including obsessive compulsive disorder in relation to cleanliness, custody would have a very traumatic effect on him - more so than it would on the average prisoner,' Mr McDonald explained. Read More