The grandfather of a six-year-old girl who died after an horrific barbecue accident stole her funeral fund for a flutter on the horses.
Thomas Spoors, who was looking after Shannon Davies when she was fatally burned earlier this year, was today described as 'scum' by the youngster's stepfather.
Spoors escaped with curfew and a community order when he appeared before magistrates.
The 56-year-old broke into his daughter Suzanne Davies' flat and stole hundreds of pounds in cash savings just two months after Shannon lost her battle for life.
He appeared in custody before Wigan magistrates and pleaded guilty to burglary and stealing an unknown quantity of cash.
The money had originally been set aside for Christmas gifts, but after Shannon's death Suzanne and partner Glyn Gaskell decided that half of it should go towards the funeral costs.
They have just been notified that the DSS is prepared to foot £750 but that is only a little over half the cost.
Glyn said today that £550 had been taken in the raid and that only £250 of it had been recovered.
To add to the family's anger at the 'lenient' sentence they were told that if they wanted to try to retrieve any more money they would have to take civil action.
An alcoholic and epileptic, Spoors was seen by Ms Davies near to her home, in Scholes as she left to go shopping on Saturday.
A neighbour again saw Spoors near to his daughter's flat and, recognising him, innocently agreed to help the defendant climb through an unsecured first-floor window so he could find a credit card he claimed to have left in the flat.
After leaving Spoors alone the neighbour became suspicious when he heard a loud crash from inside the property, the court heard.
Prosecutor Mike Ardern said: 'The witness went back to the flat and asked Mr Spoors if he was burgling his daughter's flat, to which Mr Spoors replied "Yes, keep your mouth shut and grab a handful".
'The handful relates to a quantity of cash that was on the floor.'
The court heard that the savings amounted to at least £450 in silver and change, a substantial portion of which had not been returned to the family.
Spoors, of Wigan, was later arrested and immediately admitted to the offence, saying he would plead guilty when the case reached court.
Melissa Fagan, defending, said: 'He's an alcoholic and he is epileptic and he has no recollection of how he came to commit the offence, although he does accept that it was he who was responsible.'
Spoors was handed a six-month community order with a four-month curfew requirement, and ordered to pay £60 costs.
After the hearing Glyn said: 'I don't think it is possible for anyone to stoop much lower than this: to rob your own family of money for your grand-daughter's funeral. You have to be sick scum, despicable to do this.
'I knew it was him straight away. He had been looking after our Bethany, who has cystic fibrosis, for a couple of days so he knew where we kept the money for the kids treats and the funeral.
'He went straight to it without disturbing anything else and then told his mates that it was money that he and his granddaughter had been saving.
'I tracked him down to Whelley bookies and he admitted it straight out. We can't believe he wasn't more severely punished. And the fact that we will struggle to get the money back to cover the funeral costs just adds insult to injuries.
'He has betrayed us all, including Shannon, and he is not welcome anywhere near us. He had better keep away.'