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The Honolulu Advertiser

Posted at 3:36 p.m., Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Maui man sentenced to life in prison plus 30 years

Advertiser Staff

WAILUKU, Maui — A Maui man was sentenced today by 2nd Circuit Judge Joseph Cardoza to life in prison plus 30 years for strangling a retired Navy doctor during a burglary at the victim's Kihei condominium.

Michael A. Pavich, 35, was convicted in October of second-degree murder, robbery, burglary, kidnapping and a drug paraphernalia charge.

The body of Edward "Doc" Bird, 82, was found Dec. 3, 2000, on his bedroom floor at the Pacific Shores in Kihei. Bird had welcomed neighborhood children into his home and was a familiar sight cruising along South Kihei Road in his motorized three-wheeler.

Lisa Avilla, 35, whose children used to visit Bird, took Pavich to the victim's apartment to rob him. Avilla testified at Pavich's trial that he struggled with the elderly man, hitting Bird on the head and choking him.

Avilla was allowed to plead no contest to a reduced charge of manslaughter in exchange for her testimony, and is serving a 50-year term.