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Trial for Shaniya Davis' accused killer to begin in February

Posted August 10, 2012

— The man accused of buying, raping and killing a 5-year-old Fayetteville girl in November of 2009 will go on trial in February, officials with the Cumberland County district attorney's office said Friday. 

Mario Andrette McNeill, 32, has been charged with murder, kidnapping and rape in the death of Shaniya Davis, whose body was found in a kudzu patch near the Lee-Harnett county line on Nov. 16, 2009, six days after her mother, Antoinette Nicole Davis, reported her missing from her Fayetteville home. 

McNeill and Davis will both go on trial in February. Shaniya Nicole Davis WRAL.com archive: Shaniya Davis case

Authorities say Davis was complicit in her daughter's death. Arrest warrants stated that she "did knowingly provide Shaniya with the intent that she be held in sexual servitude" and "did permit an act of prostitution with Shaniya."

An autopsy determined that Shaniya died of asphyxiation and that injuries she suffered were consistent with a sexual assault. A medical examiner noted in the autopsy that investigators believe the girl was used to pay off a drug debt.

A Cumberland County grand jury indicted Antoinette Davis in July on charges of first-degree murder, indecent liberties with a child, felony child abuse, felony sexual servitude, rape of a child, sexual offense of a child by an adult offender, human trafficking and making a false police report. She pleaded not guilty in February.

Prosecutors have said they plan to seek the death penalty against McNeill but not Antoinette Davis.

5 Comments

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  • Country Girlz Have MORE fun Aug 15, 1:21 p.m.

    I hate that it takes so long for a case to get to court. Now after almost 3 years the family will feel this loss all over again as if it just happened. This little girl who the nation didn't know suddenly became everyone's daughter, grand child or friend. Her story touched everyone's lives. This is just so sad. I'd love to be on the jury.

  • TipTip Aug 14, 12:14 p.m.

    I agree with kdbarnes0521. She is just as guilty and should also be facing the death penalty. They both are monsters and evne though she did not kill the little girl, she is just as guilty for using that baby to pay her debt. She will be beaten in prison!!!! They better keep her in safety lock up!

  • kdbarnes0521 Aug 14, 11:31 a.m.

    Not the Death Penalty against her???? She was just as guilty! and she had another child after this all happened! I can't believe they would seek the death penatly against him but not her! What kind of mother sells her daughter off for SEX!!!

  • carrboroyouth Aug 13, 11:29 a.m.

    Why has this case taken nearly three years to come to trial?
    The video of him carrying the little girl to his room still haunts me. Sick...

  • Country Girlz Have MORE fun Aug 13, 11:01 a.m.

    I am over joyed that these two monsters will have their day in court. I thought this baby would never have justice. I watched in horror as her father, Aunt Carey and other family members begged for her safe return. I have watched for years waiting to see the day they would be sentenced...maybe to the same fate they sealed for little Shaniya. I Still pray for this family. I will never forget the news feed of her Aunt Carey saying she and Shaniya were robbed and they would not go quietly into the night. The tears on that womans face and her trembling words with all the heartache will forever be in my mind. Rest in peace little one.