NORCROSS, Ga. -- By all accounts, Nicholas Jackson, II was a model teenager.
Class valedictorian, rising football star. He could be a bit shy, but younger kids looked up to him. Especially his two younger brothers.
Thursday night, his life was cut short. Jackson was shot and killed in the threshold of his downstairs bedroom. A victim of a home invasion.
"It affected everybody. Not just the school, but the whole community as well," said Dr. Burnell Pope, principal of Hopewell Christian Academy, where Jackson was a student until last year.
Norcross police say six men kicked in the basement door of the two-story home on Autry Street. Chief Warren Summers said they still do not have a motive, but say the suspects had no connection to Jackson or his family.
"Clearly some sort of theft was a motive to go into the house, but we're not certain what, if anything, was taken from the house," Chief Summers said.
Investigators say the shooting does not appear to be gang-related.
Nick's father, Nicholas Jackson, Sr., said his son likely heard the men inside the house and opened his bedroom door to see what was going on. He believes that startled the men, who began shooting.
At least six shots were fired. Jackson was hit once. He later died.
Within 45 minutes, Norcross police arrested six men for the murder.
Jackson's older sister was able to provide a description of the suspects' silver minivan. A Gwinnett police officer spotted the van and initiated a traffic stop. The occupants jumped and ran but were captured by officers.
The six suspects were identified as follows:
Rico Dehaven West, 19
Michael Earl Davis, 23
Anthony Bernard Lumpkin, 32
Timothy Lamar Johnson, 34
Jason Dozier, 36
Eddie Lewis Green, 46
See their mugshots at norcross.11alive.com.
17-year-old Nikia Jackson was upstairs when her younger brother was shot.
"I came downstairs, I saw the van pulling away and I knew something was wrong," she said.
She called her grandmother and tried to give her brother CPR until help arrived.
All of the men have been charged with murder and burglary.