CALUMET CITY, Ill. (WLS) -- Two suspects have been charged in the fatal shooting of a security guard at River Oaks Mall last year, Calumet City police said Friday.
Norman Thomas, a U.S. Army veteran, was working security at a jewelry store inside the mall on Nov. 16, 2022, when police said he was shot and killed during a robbery.
Investigators identified the suspects as Maxx Walker and Frank Adkins, both 38 years old and from Chicago.
Police took both Walker and Adkins into custody on Monday. Both have been charged with first-degree murder, police said.
Family said Thomas, 57, was a father, grandfather and husband, who they described as "full of life." They said they are absolutely heartbroken over the loss of a person they describe as their "Superman."
Thomas' family joined members of the Calumet City Police Department Friday afternoon in announcing the charges.
"This has been an ongoing investigation for the last year now, putting the pieces of the puzzle together, between analyzing the evidence and conducting interviews -- led us to where we are today," Calumet City Police Chief Kevin Kolosh said.
One year later at River Oaks mall, security has increased patrols and improved communication with the police department.
"The senseless violence leaves a hole in the heart of Calumet City, left a hole in the heart of this family," Calumet City Mayor Thaddeus Jones said.
"To have my father taken away, it ls like someone pull the rug from under us," Thomas' daughter Erykah Thomas said. "This occasion does not define who my father was. He was more than a news story. He was a person. He was my father."
The Thomas family said they are grateful for progress in the investigation, but are still deeply hurting.
"It was good step in the right direction, and I know the detectives are working hard with it. It was a ray of hope," Thomas' wife Syrall Thomas said. "It's been hard still, hard. It's not good."