Guntersville man accused in Blount County shooting linked to church fire

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Daniel Blackmon

BLOUNT COUNTY, Ala. – The Guntersville man killed after Tuesday’s shooting and chase from Marshall County to Blount County has been linked to a church fire, investigators said.

Daniel Blackmon was a person of interest in the April 10 fire at Cedar Grove Church of Christ, ABC 33/40 reported.

Daniel Blackmon’s father, Randy Blackmon, told 33/40 that he accepts that his son pulled the trigger when three people were shot. He said his son did have a criminal record, but nothing that would indicate a shooting would happen.

His father believes that all changed three weeks ago. “My son was sick. He had been diagnosed about three weeks ago with bipolar-one,” Randy Blackmon said.

He said he is not ashamed to reveal the details of his son’s condition, saying, “He was seeing demons. He was hearing demons. He was talking to God. Things had gotten bad.”

Law enforcement officers shot and killed Daniel Blackmon on Hwy 278 in Blount County after he led them on a chase.

“The demons were out to get him. There were good demons and bad demons. Good angels and bad angels,” Randy Blackmon said.

Officials say Daniel Blackmon shot three people at a gas station near the intersection of Alabama Highway 79 and U.S. 278.

Weeks before, he was checked out of a hospital after getting mental help, his father said.

“Some days he was perfect. Some days you did not know if you could talk to him or not,” Randy Blackmon said.

A judge allowed Daniel Blackmon to get 150 days of outpatient care. His father said prior to the bipolar diagnosis, his son was very different.

“You couldn’t ask for a better friend. Anything he could do to help you, like I said, smart in school, on the math team .”