Serial drink driver Mitchell Walsh could face jail.

Serial drink driver Mitchell Walsh has been jailed for flouting a licence suspension.

A notorious traffic and drink driving pest, who was involved in the death of a 10-year-old girl in 2003, has been jailed for flouting a licence suspension.

Mitchell William Donald Walsh, formerly known as Mitchell Walsh-McDonald, was sentenced to nine months in prison on Wednesday after pleading guilty to getting behind the wheel with no authority to drive. It was his eighth unlicensed driving offence.

In sentencing, Magistrate Joe Randazzo said Walsh had an “appalling” traffic record that displayed a “pattern of continuing disobedience to the traffic laws”.

The court heard that Walsh had a long history of traffic crimes, including several unlicensed driving convictions, two convictions for driving under the influence of alcohol, two offences for drink-driving with a blood alcohol level in excess of 0.08 and two for driving over 0.05. He has also been charged for contravening driving bans and breaching the terms of two extraordinary drivers' licences.

“Time is up Mr Walsh,” Magistrate Randazzo said.

“This was simply not an error. It was an informed, deliberate choice that you made to drive.

“Quite frankly, it does stretch imagination, it does border on incredulity. It’s unbelievable that you have not received the message it is not OK to drive.

“You took a risk [and] you were sprung.”

Perth Magistrates Court heard that Walsh, 30, was intercepted by police on Royal St, Yokine on January 23 this year as he drove his Toyota Hilux to work.

The court was told Walsh had a plastering business at the time of the offence and he had driven to work after a pre-arranged lift fell through because his colleague called in sick.

He had been under suspension after being sentenced to a three-year driving ban in May 2010 and a subsequent two-year disqualification in August 2013 for a drink-driving offence.

Magistrate Randazzo said there were no extenuating circumstances to justify Walsh’s actions on the day.

Defence lawyer Oliver Paxman told the court psychological reports found Walsh had suffered untreated, emotional issues since the death of 10-year-old Jess Meehan in 2003 – a charge of which he was acquitted.

“That incident has had a very lasting effect on him,” Mr Paxman said.

He said Walsh had a “heightened level of anxiety and stress” and he “continues to have nightmares on a weekly basis about this [Meehan] matter”. He said his client needed drug and alcohol counselling, grief counselling and psychological support.

Walsh was banned from driving for 10 years after a series of traffic and drink-driving indiscretions, including involvement in the death of Miss Meehan as she rode her bike across Marmion Avenue, Clarkson in 2003. She died two days later.

At the time, Walsh had a blood alcohol reading of 0.165, but he was not found guilty of dangerous driving causing death.

A law, known as Jess' Law, was later passed in Parliament so that anyone with a blood alcohol reading above 0.15 per cent who was involved in a fatal crash would automatically be charged with dangerous driving causing death.

In sentencing on Wednesday, Magistrate Randazzo said he would have been derelict in his duty as a magistrate not to impose a term of imprisonment to deter others in the community against similar actions.

Walsh’s nine-month jail term, handed down on Wednesday, was backdated to April 16 when he was remanded in custody. His licence was disqualified until October 2016.