Man at center of WINK News investigation now charged with drugging, molesting child

Reporter: Andryanna Sheppard
Published: Updated:

After a years-long WINK investigation, Dwayne Staron was arrested and convicted of grand theft. Now he and his wife, Theresa Staron, are both behind bars.

They are both accused of child neglect and contributing to the delinquency of a child. Dwayne Staron faces an additional child molestation charge.

WINK News Consumer Reporter Andryanna Sheppard first reported on Dwayne Staron back in 2021. He stole thousands from the Tran family in Cape Coral. They paid Dwayne’s Handy Man Services about $9,000 to remodel their kitchen, re-pipe their Cape Coral home, and change out some doors and windows. When Staron didn’t do the job, the job he was not licensed to do in the first place, they sued him and won but never saw a penny.

“They are pretty good at not fulfilling their contracts and not fulfilling promises. And as people, I would say they’re not good people,” Phong Tran said in an August 2021 interview.

A few months later, Cape Coral Police went after Staron criminally, issuing a warrant for his arrest. He turned himself in in February 2022. After multiple hearings and several court dates, he plead no contest and the judge found him guilty.

Dwayne Staron's 2022 mug shot
Dwayne Staron’s 2022 mug shot, CREDIT: WINK News

“I put my foot forward to hopefully bring some justice or hoping to bring some consequences to them,” Linh Tran said in a previous interview in October 2021. “I could have just gave up and just, you know, lost that money.”

Staron was sentenced to five years probation, 50 hours of community service, plus he had to take an anti-theft class. On top of that, he was ordered to pay the Trans restitution and more than $600 in court fees. Linh Tran told Sheppard Wednesday that she hasn’t gotten a dime from him. Now that Staron is accused of child neglect, child molestation and contributing to delinquency of a child, she’s lost any hope she had left that she’d get her money back.

“He doesn’t have the skill set. He doesn’t have the license. I don’t know how he can get the job,” Tran said in an earlier interview.

Dwayne and Theresa Staron's 2024 mug shots
Dwayne and Theresa Staron’s 2024 mug shots
Credit: The Lee County Sheriff’s Office

Dwayne Staron was in court Wednesday morning on the child sexual abuse charges. Even though his bond was set for $25,000, he’ll stay behind bars since he was already on felony probation for grand theft.

According to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, Dwayne was said to have drugged and molested a 13-year-old girl for two years. The abuse was first reported to deputies during a welfare check in October 2023. The following day, the child was taken to a child advocacy center and is now living out of the state with family.

He’ll be back in court Thursday to discuss that and back in court on June 10 for the child sexual abuse charges.

Theresa Staron, his wife, has a bond set at $10,000. Her next court date is also set for June 10th.

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