FORT VALLEY, Ga. (AP) — A 23-year-old Georgia college student whose body was found days after she disappeared was strangled, according to an arrest warrant.

The cause of Anitra Gunn’s death was revealed Monday as a judge read aloud the charges against DeMarcus Little. Little, also 23, was charged on Friday with malice murder just hours after being arraigned on criminal damage charges. Authorities said Little smashed windows in Gunn’s home and slashed her car tires on Feb. 5.

Gunn, an agriculture student at Fort Valley State University, went missing on Valentine’s Day. Her remains were found days later in Crawford County, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) south of Atlanta and about a mile and a half east of where Little lived with his aunt, according to investigators. Her death was ruled a homicide on Thursday.

Little’s lawyer, Benjamin Davis, denied the charges during a hearing on Monday.

“He’s a soldier, so his primary focus in life is defending America, putting his life on the line,” Davis said. “If he were the kind of person that would commit a malice murder … like this, that would have been borne out in the military.”

Little was denied bond and remained in Peach County jail. Another hearing is set for April 24.