Paul Harrigan was caught after a passer-by took a picture of him on his mobile phone as he attacked the woman and stole her handbag.
Harrigan targeted the victim on June 3 this year as she walked along Cliff Road, Woodhouse.
Leeds Crown Court heard the 45-year-old approached the woman and grabbed the bag.
She was hit on the chin during the struggle and knocked to the floor.
The woman suffered an injury to her elbow and grazing during the fall.
Duncan Ritchie, prosecuting, said the woman pleaded with Harrigan not to take her property.
She told her attacker: "That's all I have".
Police recognised Harrigan from the picture taken by the member of public who witnessed the incident.
Harrigan was staying at a bail hostel after being released on licence from a sentence imposed for killing a man in Scotland in 2011.
He was not at the property but was arrested on Woodsley Road the next day.
Harrigan tried to run away but was chased and caught by officers.
He swallowed three wraps of heroin and cocaine during the struggle.
Harrigan, of Wensleydale Rise, Armley, pleaded guilty to robbery and possession of class A drugs.
The court heard he has previous convictions for violent offences, robbery and possessing weapons.
He was jailed for six years, with an extended licence period of four years, in 2011 for culpable homicide - similar to manslaughter under English law.
Harrigan and another man beat a 32-year-old victim to death after attacking him in his own home in Paisley.
The pair repeatedly punched the man on the head, knocking him to the ground.
He fell and cracked his head hard against the floor. The victim was in a coma before he died.
Kenton Sargeant, mitigating, said Harrigan pleaded guilty to his latest offences at an early stage.
He said the offence was committed to fund his drug addiction.
Judge Robin Mairs imposed an extended sentence totalling seven years, six months.
Harrigan must serve a custodial term of four and a half years followed by a further three years on licence.
The judge said: "You have a lengthy history of violent offending, robbery and attempted robbery and you have a history of causing serious harm in the process.
"I have no doubt that you are danger to the public."