Student invented theft to win extra coursework time.
The 22-year-old was struggling to meet a deadline at Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU) and told police his laptop had been stolen when he was attacked in the street. He was given a fixed penalty notice of pounds 80 after he admitted inventing the attack.
He told police a man dressed in dark clothing attacked him on Newbold Walk in Hulme, Greater Manchester, in the early hours of Monday, April 24.
He said the man ran behind him and knocked him over, before grabbing the laptop containing all his work.
The project was due to be handed in the following day.
After police began questioning him about the attack, he confessed to inventing it.
Superintendent John O'Hare said: "The irresponsible actions of this particular individual wasted police time that should have been spent assisting members of the public who needed our help in emergency situations."
"I hope this sends out as a clear message that making false reports of crime will not be tolerated."
A spokesman for MMU said the student had gone to "extreme" lengths.
He said: "It is very rare indeed that a student goes to such lengths over an essay deadline and we take a very dim view of it."