Authorities are searching for a man believed to be with a missing 5-year-old Fayetteville girl, police said Thursday night.
Police said Shaniya Nicole Davis was seen at a Sanford hotel on Tuesday morning with 29-year-old Mario Andrette McNeill.
A hotel worker called police on Tuesday to report seeing a child matching Shaniya’s description, according to Theresa Chance, spokeswoman for the Fayetteville Police Department.
Surveillance video showed the child with McNeill at the hotel at 6:11 a.m., less than a half-hour before her mother reported her missing from the family’s home at 1116-A Sleepy Hollow Drive in Fayetteville.
Police immediately traveled to Sanford, but McNeill had already checked out of the hotel.
Chance said Shaniya appeared to be “well taken care of.”
“We believe she is safe. We have no reason to believe he would harm her,” Chance said.
McNeill has a criminal history, including arrests for fleeing to elude arrest, assault on a female and drug possession.
McNeill’s relationship to the child is unknown.
“Whoever has my daughter tonight, I just ask that they let her go and bring her home safe. I miss her and love her very much,” said Shaniya’s father, Bradley Lockhardt.
Authorities urged McNeill to bring Shaniya to the closest law enforcement or medical facility so she could be safely reunited with her family.