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One arrested, one sought in ‘very violent’ Fort Myers homicide

By Staff | Aug 1, 2012

One North Fort Myers man has been charged with felony murder and home invasion robbery and another is sought in the death of a Fort Myers woman.

Dustin Dean Jaye, 23, of 7621 Morgan Jones Drive, was arrested Tuesday in connection with the death of Debra Rose Striano, 55. He also was charged with destruction of evidence.

Striano was found dead inside her home on July 24, the victim of “a very violent death,” the Lee County Sheriff Office said in a prepared statement released Tuesday.

Her pet dog, a border collie, was also found with serious injuries requiring veterinary care, officials stated, adding it’s believed the dog sustained wounds when trying to protect Striano.

A warrant has been issued for Jaye’s uncle, Billy Ray Retherford Jr., 42, also of 7621 Morgan Jones Drive. The warrant is for felony violation of probation. Charges related to the homicide investigation are pending, officials said, adding Retherford has served time in prison for other violent felony crimes and is considered dangerous.

Using information from the community and evidence collected, detectives with the Major Crimes Unit developed Jaye and Retherford as suspects and subsequently learned the pair targeted the victim’s residence because of valuables they knew were inside, the release states.

If anyone sees Retherford or know of his whereabouts they are asked to call the Lee County Sheriff’s Office at 477-1000 or, to remain anonymous and be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000, Southwest Florida Crime Stoppers at 1-800 -780-TIPS(8477). Tips may also be made online at www.swflcrimestoppers.org, through the TipSubmit app on any iPhone or by texting CRIMES (274637) Keyword: REWARD.