Murdered 10-year-old Lily Peters died from blunt force trauma and was strangled, her autopsy showed.
Preliminary autopsy results confirmed Lily died of strangulation and blunt force trauma, Chippewa County Coroner Ronald Patten said Thursday.
He added the autopsy on Lily showed the manner of death was homicide and said he expected the results of toxicology tests, which will include DNA samples and more evidence on her rape, within four to six weeks.
Lily's cousin, Carson Peters-Berger, 14, was arrested on suspicion of murdering and raping the 10-year-old fourth-grader and was held on a $1million cash bond.
Peters-Berger is facing a possible life sentence after being charged with three counts over Lily's death: first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree sexual assault and first-degree sexual assault of a child.
In court, prosecutors said Peters-Berger planned to 'rape and kill the victim from the get-go when he left the house with the victim to go down the trail'.
Chippewa County District Attorney Wade Newell said: 'He punched the victim in the stomach, knocked her to the ground, essentially strangled her, hit her with a stick, before strangling her to the point of death – before he then sexually assaulted her.'
Peters-Berger is now incarcerated at the Northwest Regional Juvenile Detention Center in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, and is due to appear again in court next week.
Lily's father, Alex Peters, 43, reported his daughter missing at 9pm on Sunday when she failed to return home from visiting her aunt.
Lily, who lived less than half a mile from her aunt's home, was discovered lying a little way off a bike trail on Monday morning.
Locals in Chippewa Falls said she was often seen cycling down the path on her bike which was found close to her body.
The spot where she was discovered is close to the Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company, which sits on the bank of Star Lake. The location is within view of a row of houses on the other side of the 23-acre lake.
It came as reporters revealed 14-year-old Peters-Berger is the son of a convicted white pedophile.
Adam Berger, 37, spent three years in jail after being caught with a stash of pornographic images of prepubescent girls on his phone.
According to charging documents for Adam Berger, 10 pornographic photos showing very young girls in spread-legged positions were found on his phone. Some of them had been doctored to include comments such as 'first in ur little girls asshole and then in ur mouth mom.'
Berger's own face was superimposed on some of them.
Other pictures showed the children semi-dressed – among them one showing a girl in a green feather boa and black high heels and another girl wearing a pink tutu skirt.
All of the revolting pictures focused on the children's genitalia according to court papers.
He also had drug paraphernalia including four crack pipes in his home.
Reporters can reveal that Adam Berger is currently living in a halfway house in Eau Claire after being released from Oshkosh Correctional Institution in April 2021.
He remains on supervised probation and is on the sex offender registry. He and his lawyers had opposed extended probation because he would not have had unsupervised visits with his son – who he described in a letter as being 'the best of me'.
Other letters filed in support of his bid to regain unsupervised contact with his son describe an unhappy child who never smiled and looked miserable in the company of his mother Lauri Davis, 45.
When Berger was sent to jail in May 2018, Peters-Berger's life was shattered according to his grandmother Mary and family friend Katie Weathers.
His grandmother said: 'Carson has not been very happy with his father being gone.'
Weathers accused Davis of being a bad mother, saying: 'We have seen him out and about with his mom and he never looks happy.
'He doesn't smile, he's always quiet and just looks at the ground and doesn't talk.'
She also accused Davis of trying to limit his contact with Berger's friends and family.
The 14-year-old is the product of a brief relationship between Berger and Davis, who is the sister of Lily's father Alex Peters.
Davis, who is now in a relationship with convicted fraudster John Repetto, 50, lives in the Chippewa Falls home where Lily was last seen with Peters-Berger.
The white clapperboard property was sealed off with crime scene tape when reporters visited on Wednesday and was protected by two police vehicles.
Davis and Berger split when their son was two and appeared to have had an acrimonious relationship, with Davis suing for child support in 2010.
In 2017, before Berger was convicted of child porn offenses but after he had been arrested and charged, Davis called the police over an incident where he drove his car at her.
Although not allowed solo contact with his son, who was then aged eight, the charging papers say they were in the vehicle together.
Davis said she first noticed a suspicious car lurking in the alleyway behind her home and followed the vehicle before it pulled over into a random driveway.
After Peters-Berger got out, Berger then reversed into Davis who then attempted to stop him leaving.
She said he then drove the car at her, leaving her injured when she rolled off the hood and ended up on the ground.
When Berger was sent to jail, all physical contact ceased but in a jailhouse letter, Berger said he emailed with his son daily, spoke to him regularly while he was with his grandmother and mailed him a crochet blanket he had made in prison.
He said he dreamed of a future with his son, adding that he wanted unsupervised contact with his son because 'he is not a victim of my offense'. He added: 'My son is the best part of me.'
The motion was denied and it is unclear whether Berger has seen his son since his release on extended supervision in April last year.
Like her cousin, 10-year-old Lily was the product of a broken home and lived with her father Alex who has a string of convictions for drug and alcohol offenses including several DUIs.
Davis also has multiple convictions for drug offenses, all dating from at least two years before her son was born, and was also arrested for domestic battery in December 2005 following an altercation with her then-husband John Davis.
Meanwhile, Lily's mother Jennifer Eyerly, 38, is currently on probation after being convicted of multiple counts of theft including for swiping four of her mother's credit cards and racking up a bill totaling $7,788.31.
She also cheated her aunt and uncle out of $10,000 by inventing fake jobs for them – even conducting false interviews – in a bid to get hold of their banking details.
Eyerly, who remains on probation, split from Peters in 2018 and, in January, moved more than 60 miles away to the tiny village of Balsam Lake.
Lily Peters murder timeline
Sunday April 24 Lily Peters, 10, leaves her aunt's house on a bike to cycle in woods near Chippewa Falls, northeast of Eau Claire, Wisconsin. Lily's father becomes worried when she doesn't return at 9pm and reports her as missing. Police searching for the ten-year-old find her bike in woodland near a walking trail between the end of N Grove Street and the Leinenkugel's brewery parking lot, four block's from her aunt's house. Police use dog units and drones as the search for Lily continues. Monday April 25 Police find Lily's remains in woodland near Chippewa Falls, northeast of Eau Claire.
Tuesday April 26
An anonymous Reddit user posts: 'What's scary is I was playing Pokemon Go in the park that day walking along that very same trail, my stomach turns when I think I saw that girl in a pink/purple hoodie on her bike with another kid on my way out. I have a suspicion that it could be another kid that did it.'
Police announce they have arrested a suspect for Lily's murder.
Wednesday April 27
Police say the suspect is the 14-year-old eighth-grader cousin of Lily.
He appeared in adult court named only by his initials of CP-B and is charged with first-degree intentional homicide, first-degree sexual assault and first-degree sexual assault of a child under age 13, resulting in great bodily harm. Bond is set at $1million.
Thursday April 28
Carson Peters-Berger, 14, is revealed as Lily's cousin accused of her murder and sexual assault.
DailyMail.com reveals 14-year-old Peters-Berger is the son of convicted pedophile Adam Berger, 37, who spent three years in jail after being caught with a stash of pornographic images of prepubescent girls on his phone.
Lily's autopsy shows she died of strangulation and blunt force trauma, Chippewa County Coroner Ronald Patten says.
He adds the autopsy showed the manner of death was homicide and says he expects the results of toxicology tests within four to six weeks.