Former Fire Chief Murdered Saturday Morning In Molino; Suspect Arrested After Manhunt

December 26, 2020

A longtime firefighter was shot and killed early Saturday morning in Molino, and a suspect has been arrested.

The Escambia County Sheriff’s Office responded to the 400 block of Molino Road about 3:30 a.m. and arrived to find the adult with multiple gunshot wounds. Gary Diamond was pronounced deceased at the scene.

The suspect, 30-year old Jared Cordel Clakley, was taken into custody shortly before sunrise Saturday. He was charged with murder, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, aggravated battery causing bodily harm, and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He is being held in the Escambia County Jail without bond.

The shooting appeared to be the result of a domestic situation, according to ECSO Sgt. Melanie Peterson.

Relatives said Diamond stepped in front of the gun to save the lives of his family.

“What was to be a family spending the holiday together turned tragic. It’s incredibly sad it would happen at Christmas’,” Escambia County Sheriff-elect Chip Simmons said. “The fact that he was committed to public service his entire life makes it an even greater tragedy.”

“An arrest has been made, and we will continue to work with the State Attorney’s Office on prosecution,” Simmons added.

Related Story: Communities Mourn After Murder Of Former Molino Fire Chief Gary Diamond

Peterson said deputies quickly developed Clakley as a suspect, and a K-9 unit was called to the scene to assist in the manhunt.

The investigation is continuing.

Pictured: The scene of an early Saturday morning murder in the 400 block of Molino Road. photos, click to enlarge.



42 Responses to “Former Fire Chief Murdered Saturday Morning In Molino; Suspect Arrested After Manhunt”

  1. Nikki Payne on December 26th, 2021 9:51 am

    I can’t believe it’s been 1 year already. Seems like yesterday because it is so unforgettable. We all think about you every single day ! I know you are looking down on your beautiful wife and grandbabies and kids . They love and miss you so much. I know one day you will all be together again ! We love you and miss you so much ! Merry Christmas Gary!

  2. Sharon Diamond on December 31st, 2020 6:13 am

    I would like to start off by saying Gary, you are going to be missed by so many family members, friends and loved by each and every one of us that knew you and a host of communities that you gave your life at times to protect. This is such a terrible thing that happened to you and you should never have had this happen to you. Your life was a remarkable one and the ones that knew you knew how dedicated you were to your family, friends and the Fire Departments that you spent your time at. We love you so much and hope that you are with all the loved ones that we have lost along the way. You were the best cousin a person could have ever asked for. The memories that I have of all of us growing up will; be cherished in my heart and never forgotten. You had a heart of Gold that showed through so many times and our last name says it all. You were a true Gem all the way through to the bone. We will always be there for Cindy and the kids. You are one in a million and have touched so many people through the years and were and always will be considered a true HERO. I love you Gary and will miss you but you will remain in my heart forever. Your cousin, Sharon.

  3. jim on December 29th, 2020 3:49 pm

    gary was one of the best iam so sorry.molino is turning into a little crime town.we need the highway patrol to watch hwy 95a n right after barreneau park rd its a drag strip/help

  4. Bill on December 29th, 2020 3:17 am

    I apologize Ms. Huk. I didn’t mean any disrespect. Condolences to you and your family.

  5. Melissa Huk on December 28th, 2020 2:11 pm

    For the man above “Bill”making your comment about how many murders there have been in 14 days who are you? Why come here and post this at a time like this? This was my family member and a damn good man please take your comments to the Mayor of your city and ask him that question the only thing that should be posted here are condolences to our family his wife, kids and grandkids! Gary Diamond died a “HERO” protecting his family that’s what we need to remember! You want change BE THE CHANGE do something about the drugs in your City but don’t bring that in here respect our family!!!’

  6. CHRISTY ARMOUR on December 28th, 2020 8:12 am

    This is truly heart breaking to read and we send our condolences! He was selfless & took care of his family and community! Heaven gained a very special Man! I pray for those left behind to grieve this terrible tragedy!

  7. Dale King on December 27th, 2020 2:06 pm

    I remember when Gary was born, he was always a good kid and like myself he Loved his Grandmother Lucile Diamond. R.I.P. Gary you will be missed by so many.

  8. Bag on December 27th, 2020 11:17 am

    Praying for family he died saving others a true Man. God bless

  9. Workin man on December 27th, 2020 11:02 am

    It’s sad to lose a man that would potentially give his life to save anothers

  10. Karma on December 27th, 2020 8:58 am

    This is just a heartbreak to so many, this man has touched so many lives in his precious time on Earth and now he’s been called to guard Jesus. Killed by a repeat offender that by looking at his record, probably shouldn’t have been out of jail to hurt someone in the first place, because apparently he has no remorse for anyone anyways, now an innocent Man that shouldn’t be dead is dead. Senseless murder, that could have been prevented. My condolences and prayers go out to his family and any one that knew him or that he may have touched your life in a special way. May God be with everyone.

  11. Lori Buring on December 27th, 2020 12:49 am

    Gary was the hardest working, nicest, most helpful, upbeat person you could know. He didn’t have a bad word to say about anyone and would give you the shirt off his back if you needed it. He was a very devoted family man and long time public servant (both EMS and Fire). He never met a stranger. People like him made our world a better place and we are all the poorer for him not being in it anymore. He, nor his family, deserved this. I hope the DA keeps Jared Clakley permanently off the streets.

  12. JJ on December 26th, 2020 11:59 pm

    Condolences to the family. That POS should get the chair. I live in Molino and noticed an increase in crime out here in the last 10 years. I know this particular incident is a domestic situation however other crimes are happening a lot more out here in Molino. There needs to be more of a Sheriffs presence out here. I know they’re understaffed.

  13. Timothy W. McGlothren on December 26th, 2020 10:39 pm


  14. Joyce Crutchfield on December 26th, 2020 8:16 pm

    Gary Diamond was a wonderful person. My heart is just broken! Praying earnestly for Cindy and their children and all of Gary’s family and friends .

  15. Family/friend on December 26th, 2020 7:08 pm

    This really makes me angry. Why someone would even want to pull the trigger or even pull a gun on Gary. That man was no harm to no one.may his soul Rest In Peace. He didn’t deserve to go out like that. This hurts, I can only imagine what his wife and kids are feeling. My prayers are with y’all.

  16. Torrie Edmonson on December 26th, 2020 7:02 pm

    gary will be missed. he was such a good man. i looked up to him as a father. after my dad died he was one of the men i looked up to. he was such a good father, grandfather, and cousin. i’m praying for my family and his family. i love y’all of the edmonson/diamond families.

  17. Marie Henson on December 26th, 2020 6:58 pm

    Prayers and condolences to his family. Such a wonderful guy and heart of gold. I worked with him at WFH and you couldn’t have worked with a nicer guy. Just heartbroken to hear this. So heartbroken for his family

  18. Kim D on December 26th, 2020 6:04 pm

    To all Gary’s family, my prayers for comfort. Cindy my heart is with you. So very sad, senseless, evil act. Gary was such a good person.

  19. JTV on December 26th, 2020 5:56 pm

    @Shannon there’s not enough death penalty in this country anymore. That’s why continues to have another murder for its headlines every day. People continue to think that murderers, rapist and child molesters can be rehabilitated, they can’t.

  20. Molino resident on December 26th, 2020 5:54 pm

    The death penalty should be kept in place for scum just like this. Murdering such a good man and ruining the lives of his family should be punishable by death. I hope the scum rots.

  21. Michelle Wallace on December 26th, 2020 5:52 pm

    I am so sorry for your loss I am praying for you all love you Cindy

  22. Shelly on December 26th, 2020 5:50 pm

    It is just so heart breaking I am in awe and Cindy and the kids I am praying for y’all and the whole family. I am so sorry for your loss.

  23. Freda Lee Whaley on December 26th, 2020 4:43 pm

    I didn’t know him personally but did know some of his family. Have never met nicer people. My heart goes out to all of them.

  24. Hathaway Family on December 26th, 2020 4:26 pm

    Prayers going out to all family and friends of Gary’s. If you knew him then you had a friend for life. He was one of the most respected gentlemen I knew growing up in Molino. He was a good man that would do anything for anyone else. You will be forever missed. Prayers again to Cindy and the kids.

  25. Kathryn Diamond on December 26th, 2020 4:09 pm

    Gary was born to love and serve. He was an honorable man who gave selflessly of himself to care for others. He was a strong influence on so many because of his untiring dedication to his family and friends, showing them that loving people and serving people would bring them huge rewards. My heart breaks for the family and many friends that are left behind as they look forward to an emptiness in their hearts that lays ahead of them. This is a tragedy to say the least but I know that Gary was met by his creator with open arms and is at peace with his family who have gone before him and will one day see those of us left behind. The man that did this to Gary will live with this moment of madness for the rest of his life and I pray for his soul. Cindy, you lost half of yourself today and life will never be the same again. My prayers and thoughts and love are with you.

  26. Vickey Grant on December 26th, 2020 3:42 pm

    My heart goes out to the family,may God keep them and comfort them in their time of grief,this is a tragedy,and a good person died for no reason.

  27. Darrell Harvell on December 26th, 2020 3:15 pm

    He will very much so be missed … this was a senseless murder… of a man that would give his life to save a stranger…

  28. Mickey Allen on December 26th, 2020 3:02 pm

    Cindy, my heart goes out to you and the family, my prayers are with you.

  29. DALE on December 26th, 2020 2:41 pm


  30. DALE on December 26th, 2020 2:39 pm


  31. Gwen on December 26th, 2020 1:53 pm

    My heart goes out to this family. There are no words to express my sadness for each of you. May God Bless you all.

  32. Denise Enfinger on December 26th, 2020 12:35 pm

    This is such horrific news!! He did not have a mean bone in his body!! If you were wrong, he told you that you were. He was a good man and spent much of his life giving back to the public! Prayers for comfort for his family!! I’m so very sorry.

  33. Bonnie Glass on December 26th, 2020 11:38 am

    Your right Sherry.. no words.. but lots of tears & PRAYERS. GOD WILL TAKE CARE OF THAT PERSON. HEAVEN IS NOT IN HIS FUTURE… I DON’T THINK…

  34. Shannon Payne on December 26th, 2020 10:53 am

    Give him the death penalty.

  35. Just Me on December 26th, 2020 9:58 am

    Sad situation, People have so much anger this day and age, it build up and causes damage that can never be changed. I’m sure he, (The person I knew was trying to keep his family from any more harm.) The one who took his life will never be the same again either. Lose, Lose situation for all involved, on both sides. My condolences and prayers for the ones who’s lives are forever changed.

  36. Big red on December 26th, 2020 9:31 am

    Two more that haven’t been released to the press that happened on 24 and this morning.

  37. np630ss on December 26th, 2020 9:26 am

    Clakley has a long arrest record. His crimes show an ever increasing level of violence. His violent tendencies were headed into murder for quite sometime now. If convicted, I hope he is incarcerated for a very long time.

  38. Bridget Fletcher on December 26th, 2020 9:03 am

    I’m sure going to miss him. He was an excellent Father, Grand Father and Husband. Everyone loved him. I sure will. I’m sending prayers up with love.

  39. Jerry Gulledge on December 26th, 2020 8:54 am

    Prayers to my 2nd family at a time like this. I pray for all of you and my brother at this time. Love yall.

  40. Christie on December 26th, 2020 8:47 am

    My thoughts and prayers go out to the family. I love y’all. I wish I could take this terrible nightmare away for you. I am praying for God to give you peace and comfort during this time.

  41. Bill on December 26th, 2020 7:26 am

    How many murders have we had in the last 14 days?

  42. Sherry Sellers on December 26th, 2020 5:36 am

    May God give them peace at this time…My thoughts and prayers go out to the whole family…There are no words I could possibly say to make it better but,I Love y’all,He will be missed.

Have a comment on this story?

We welcome your comments on this story, but there are some rules to follow::

(1) Be Nice. No comments that slander another, no racism, no sexism, no personal attacks.

(2) No Harrassing Comments. If someone says something bad about you, don't respond. That's childish.

(3) No Libel. That's saying something is not true about someone. Don't do it.

(4) Keep it clean. Nothing vulgar, obscene or sexually related. No profanity or obvious substitutions. Period.

(5) reserves the right to remove any comments that violate our rules or we think to be inappropriate. We are not responsible for what is posted. Comments may not appear right away until they are approved by a moderator.

(6) Limit your comments to the subject in this story only, and limit comments to 300 words or less. Do not post copyrighted material. Comments will not be added to stories that are over 30 days old.

(7) No posts may advertise a commercial business or political group, or link to another commercial web site or political site of any kind.