Police Thursday evening in a press conference announced the cause of death of slain five-year-old Shaninya Davis as asphyxiation, the Examiner reported.
According to the report the 5-year-old was raped before being strangled to death.
Mario Andrette McNeill, 29, the person with whom Shaninya was last seen alive in a hotel video footage, has been charged with first degree murder and first degree rape of a child.
Shaniya's mother, Antoinette Davis, is accused of selling her daughter as a sex slave and appeared in court on human trafficking and child prostitution charges.
Davis and McNeill according to CNN reports have a drug history together.
Shaniya's body was found alongside a North Carolina highway near her Fayetteville hometown in North Carolina Monday afternoon.