Phyllis O'Brien Carson (32). was a young mother of four children, last seen after a night out at the Francis Truck Stop, French Camp, San Joaquin County, California. French Camp is a small community situated approximately a ten minute drive south of the town of Stockton CA and 15 minutes north of Manteca CA. Since the construction of California State Route 120, Manteca had become a popular choice for workers from the main towns and cities, along with the Bay Area, as rising house prices forced people to search for cheaper alternatives. Interstate 5 and State Route 99 are integral commuter routes through California and the I-5 is the main highway on the west coast of America, with links to San Diego, Los Angeles and Sacramento. San Francisco lies 80 miles and a one hour twenty minutes drive due west from French Camp.
Phyllis had visited the popular bar, along with her brother and sister on October 27th 1970 and later on during the evening placed a phone call to her home residence to check on her children, stating she was to receive a lift home from a friend. Sadly for Phyllis O'Brien Carson and her family, her journey home was never realized. She had vanished without a trace, that is until family members received the heartbreaking news, just over three weeks later on November 21st 1970, that her body had been discovered laying down an embankment near to Yettner Road, only five miles from the family residence.
The cause of death and perpetrator remains unknown, but foul play was certain, as her body was partially clothed, apparently thrown from a vehicle, however robbery was effectively ruled out because her belongings were untouched. Nobody from the bar has ever come forward to this day with a name of the mystery friend that Phyllis was supposed to have left with that night.
Melissa Carson, the victim's daughter, only eight years of age at the time of her mother's brutal murder, has campaigned tirelessly to achieve a break in the case, starting a Facebook page in April 2012 and hopes somebody from the small community of French Camp, past or present can provide the vital clue to help the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office push this case forward, however small.
There is little in the way of providing a Zodiac Killer connection, other than vague speculation, and although unlikely, it is a possibility that cannot ruled out entirely. The only relevant timeframes and areas of interest appear to be the abduction of Kathleen Johns seven months earlier, the disappearance of Donna Ann Lass from Stateline Nevada on September 6th 1970 and the Los Angeles Letter, mailed subsequent to the Halloween Card and the murder of Phyllis O'Brien Carson, on March 13th 1971 from Pleasanton, Alameda County, which is situated approximately 40 miles west of Manteca CA and French Camp.
The Modesto abduction of Kathleen Johns, whether or not this has a Zodiac connection, provides the closest link, in that the perpetrator of this crime
But regardless whether any slight connection may be formed or not, the most important thing, is that for Phyliss O'Brien Carson and her family, the evil perpetrator of this cowardly murder is found or identified soon. This is the least that they deserve. If you can offer any assistance please visit the San Joaquin County Sheriff's Office.