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48 years for Seattle murder

Michael Saga Maiava, the man convicted of the grisly murder of Seattle businessman Kevin Shaw, was sentenced to almost 48 years in prison, Jan 29.

Phone records show Shaw and Maiava spoke on a telephone hook-up service for men in Seattle on the morning of Oct 18, 2004. Two days later Shaw’s beaten, stabbed and strangled body was found in his car near Seattle’s Beacon Hill.

After his arrest, Maiava told police he killed the much smaller Shaw in self-defence during a dispute about marijuana. Although jurors said they were unable reach a conclusion about Maiava’s motive, King County prosecutor Jeff Baird told Xtra West he believes Maiava felt “a desire and need to inflict pain.” Baird also said Maiava was “adamant above all about not being seen as gay” in both his conversations with law enforcement and court filings from his defence attorney.

In sentencing Maiava to the maximum penalty, Superior Court Judge Theresa Doyle said her main concern was public safety and to ensure that what happened to Shaw didn’t happen to anyone else.