James Jardine, 33, crashed his Renault Clio into a telegraph pole in Milk and Water Drove, Farcet, near Peterborough, at about 10pm on Friday 13 August last year.
He left the vehicle and then reported it as missing to police in the early hours of 15 August. He claimed he had been out overnight, 13 to 14 August, and returned home to find the car gone, with the ignition keys taken from inside the house.
However, the crashed car had been reported by a member of the public who had witnessed it being driven at speed and then Jardine and a female passenger fleeing the scene.
They took a photo of Jardine hurrying away from the crash and he was identified by officers as the person reporting the car stolen.
Jardine later admitted he was driving when the crash happened but instead of waiting for the police to arrive he walked home and reported it as a theft.
Jardine, of Almond Road, Peterborough, pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice and was handed an 18-month community order and a 25-day rehabilitation activity requirement, at Peterborough Crown Court on Friday (27 May).
PC Sarah Hill, who investigated, said: “Jardine thought he could pull the wool over our eyes, but his lies soon unravelled.
“I’m glad his deception was uncovered and hope this serves as a lesson to anyone who thinks they can cheat the system. Honesty is the best policy.”