EXETER—An Exeter man was killed this past Friday after being struck walking along Route 165. Christian Costigan, 20, of 105 Tripps Corner Road, succumbed to injuries sustained in the accident at Kent County Hospital.
The driver, Jeremy Flippo, 26, of Voluntown, Conn., originally fled the scene, but turned himself in on Sunday afternoon.
Costigan and a friend were walking along the north shoulder of the road when Flippo struck the 20-year-old. An investigation by Rhode Island State Police led officers to Flippo’s residence, 310 Rockville Road in Voluntown, where they discovered his vehicle bearing marks consistent with the accident.
Costigan graduated from Exeter-West Greenwich Senior High School in 2012 and was a student at the Community College of Rhode Island, a percussionist and member of the choir at the school.
“Our hearts are broken this morning as we waken to the sad news that Christian Costigan, talented percussionist and singer, has been killed in an accident,” wrote CCRI’s Music program on its Facebook page Saturday. “Christian, it is hard to imagine the music area without your sweet and sunny presence. We will miss you so much!”
Dr. Joseph Amante y Zapata, professor of Music at CCRI, knew Costigan as a shy but committed student, one who ‘was genuinely interested in all types of music’.
“He’d quickly open up about musical experiences he was having at CCRI, with a sense of humor,” said Amante Monday via email. “In fact, I’d come to really enjoy his sarcastic wit, [and] he had a rich baritone voice.”
Amante added that the music department has not faced such a tragedy in a long time, when then music instructor Deborah Griffin was remembered with a scholarship after she died in a house fire with four of her children.
“Christian was one of those students you see who quickly grow from quiet mild-mannered to all out hero,” he said. “You could sense it under the surface. Our small music department knew and welcomed this. Christian will be on our minds every day.”
Amante said that the school will be working on a memorial for Costigan in the near future. Costigan’s funeral service will be held on Monday, July 18 at Hill Funeral Home in East Greenwich.
Flippo was processed at RISP’s Hope Valley Barracks and charged on one count of leaving the scene of an accident—death resulting. He was released on $10,000 with surety bail after arraignment by a justice of the peace.
He is scheduled to appear for a screening hearing in Fourth District Court on Aug. 24.