Prosecutors seek death penalty in Davis case
FAYETTEVILLE (WTVD) -- Prosecutors said Wednesday they intend to seek the death penalty in the 2009 rape and murder of 5-year-old Shaniya Davis.
Davis disappeared from her Fayetteville home on November 10, 2009 and her body was found days later in a wooded area just south of Sanford.
According to court documents, detectives allege 31-year-old Mario McNeill raped and strangled the girl the same day she was reported missing. He is charged with first-degree murder, first-degree rape and kidnapping.
Prosecutors said Wednesday they will not seek the death penalty for the child's mother. Antoinette Davis, 27, also faces a first-degree murder charge.
Prosecutors allege she gave McNeill her child to satisfy a drug debt. She's also charged with indecent liberties with a child, child abuse, sexual servitude, rape of a child, sexual offense of a child by adult offender, human trafficking and misdemeanor making false police report.
Shaniya was reported missing from the Sleepy Hollow Mobile Home Park off Murchison Road in Fayetteville by her mother.
A few days later, police released surveillance video from a hotel in Sanford that showed a man carrying Shaniya into an elevator.
Police said McNeil turned himself in and admitted kidnapping the girl.
Shaniya's body was found Nov. 16, 2009 along a dirt road near the Carolina Trace community in Harnett County.
shaniya davis, cumberland county, local/state
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