NewsCovering Colorado


‘Flag guy’ was the victim of fatal hit-and-run crash at Austin Bluffs and Academy, suspect arrested

Posted at 9:15 AM, Nov 02, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-02 12:11:08-04
Criss Seal
Photo of Criss Seal

COLORADO SPRINGS –Police identified the victim of Wednesday night’s fatal hit-and-run crash as a beloved man in the Colorado Springs community.

Police said  44-year-old Criss Seal was killed in a fatal crash near the intersection of Academy and Austin Bluffs Wednesday a little after 11 p.m. Seal is best known as the ‘flag guy’ for waving an American flag each year at Academy and Galley on Sept. 11 to remember the victims of the 9/11 terror attacks.

Police also announced Friday morning that they arrested a suspect in connection to Seal’s death. Officers said they arrested 26-year-old Robert M. Valencia in connection to the crash. Police said they found the vehicle involved in the crash, a black 2005 Chevy Impala, under a tarp without license plates.

Booking photo of Robert-M.-Valencia, arrested in connection to a fatal hit-and-run crash in Colorado Springs on Oct. 31, 2018.

Police said Valencia will likely be charged with a felony count of accidents involving death.

CSPD said Seal was not walking in a crosswalk when he was hit. He died at the scene from his injuries.

Seal’s death was the 44th traffic death in Colorado Springs so far in 2018, which broke the record for most traffic deaths in a year in the city. The previous record of 43 was set in 1986.

In an email to News 5, Seal’s family announced they will hold a candlelight vigil Friday night at 6:30 p.m. at the corner of Academy Blvd. and Galley Road to remember him.