Carol Beth Hilburn / November 14, 1970 / Sacramento, CA

22 year old Carol was a nurse's assistant from the Santa Rosa area of California. She was visiting Sacramento with a friend that November weekend. She was last seen at a bar on Del Paso Blvd. called Lloyd Hickey's Forty Grand Club, a place where musicians who had performed around Sacramento would head to after hours and jam late into the night.

The next day, her nude body was discovered six miles away in a field in Rio Linda. She had been severely beaten. Eerily reminiscent of the Judith Ann Hakari murder case from March of the same year and Nancy Bannallack murder case from just the month before...all in Sacramento, CA.

By way of the Donna Lass disappearance in South Lake Tahoe the month before, Carol's case has forever been linked to the Zodiac Killer murders. We aren't convinced, but there are many theorists and Zodiac followers who are. Whatever you believe, please help us solve this horrific murder.


solve crimes victim facts

DATE OF CRIME(S): November 14, 1970
CRIME(S) AGAINST: Abduction, Murder
LOCATION(S) OF CRIMES: Sacramento, CA • Rio Linda, CA
AGE: 22
OCCUPATION: Cocktail Waitress
NAMED SUSPECT(S): None.
AGENCY IN CHARGE: Sacramento Police(916) 808-0650
CASE NUMBER: #
CASE INFO: Amphetamines were found in Carol's system as well as a possible needle mark on her arm. It is unclear if either happened before or after her abduction.

If you have any information or questions about this case, please contact us through our ClueTip Form.

HILBURN Clues

If you see these items – or any other items or information – that you believe to be connected to this case – or if you have a source that better describes or disputes the information we have here – please fill out the Solve Crimes ClueTip form HERE.

CAROL'S PURSE

Carol had a brown leather or suede purse with fringe (see sketch below)

carol's jacket

Carol had a black jacket with yellow lettering that said "Santa Rosa" on her front right and "Carol" on her front left. On the back, was "The Capri Lounge". (see sketch below)

carol's boot

One of carol's boots (see sketch below) was missing from the crime scene. According to the initial police report (Sacramento Sheriff), the missing boot was a right foot "dark brown walking boot".

carol's pants

Multi-colored bell bottom pants (see sketch below)

HILBURN THEORIES

We've compiled a group of theories that we've either read in the press clippings or have considered ourselves. Considering there are a grand total of ZERO publicly known suspects, these should be considered until each of these theories are proven false or evidence has been found to prove one is correct. If you have a theory or any information that could help solve this case, please fill out the Solve Crimes ClueTip form HERE.

Two Men

An inmate at the local jail gave a statement to police that he saw Carol get into a car with two men and another woman (possibly Carol's friend Deeanne Bertini with whom she rode to Sacramento with from Santa Rosa). Both suspects were eventually identified, but no charges were filed. Both men are now deceased.

the zodiac killer

Carol's murder has been associated with the Zodiac Killer (by way of the Donna Lass disappearance two months prior), but there is zero evidence of this and we do not believe the Zodiac was involved. We have evidence that police did consider Arthur Leigh Allen (a Zodiac suspect) a suspect, but there was no evidence of his involvement, so no charges were ever filed. Allen died in 1992.

Phillip Arthur Thompson

Phillip Arthur Thompson became a possible suspect when in 2003 his DNA matched evidence in the murder of Betty Cloer (1971). Thompson was convicted of the Cloer murder in 2008 and is currently serving a life sentence. As of now, DNA from Thompson has not matched evidence in Carol's case. It is unclear what DNA evidence was collected at the location where Carol's body was discovered and if so, what condition the evidence is in.

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Solve Crimes Exclusive: Carol Beth Hilburn Police Sketch

Rare sketch of how Carol was dressed the night she was murdered. Her friend described her to a police sketch artist and it was published in the Sacramento Bee on November 18, 1970 - Click the image to enlarge.


Solve Crimes Exclusive: Carol Beth Hilburn Childhood Photo

Exclusive Childhood Photo of Carol (Family Photo, Please Do Not Replicate) - Click the image to enlarge.


Solve Crimes Exclusive: Carol Beth Hilburn Childhood Photo

Exclusive Childhood Photo of Carol (Family Photo, Please Do Not Replicate) - Click the image to enlarge.


Solve Crimes News Clippings

Note: We have included all of the news articles we could find that reference Carol Beth Hilburn. Some of the articles below are written about different crimes, but the writer somehow links the crime with that of Carol's murder.

There are many articles in the Sacramento Bee with announce changes to their now defunct "Secret Witness" program that include a blurb about the reward for information leading to an arrest or conviction of Carol Beth Hilburn's murderer. We've decided not to include each of those articles, as they are redundant. We did, however, include the first Secret Witness article ever published. Carol was among the first group of victims included in the program.

Petaluma Argus Courier

Sonoma County Woman Killer

17 November 1970


The Press Democrat

Santa Rosa Woman Is Slain

17 November 1970


The Sacramento Bee

Body Of Woman Found In Field Is Identified

17 November 1970


The Argus

Blonde, 22, beaten to death, identified

18 November 1970


The Press Democrat

Police Silent On Slaying Of SR Woman

18 November 1970


The Sacramento Bee

Did You See This Woman Last Friday?

18 November 1970


The Sacramento Bee

Carol Hilburn Murder Clues Are Sought

18 November 1970


San Bernardino County Sun

Deputies Name Slain Woman

18 November 1970


The Sacramento Bee

Woman Who Held Off Officers With Gun Faces Counts

24 March 1970


The Sacramento Bee

Slain Woman Is Traced To North Area Card Room

1 December 1970


The Sacramento Bee

Slain Woman Was At Card Room

2 December 1970


The Sacramento Bee

Slain Woman Is Traced To North Area Card Room

2 December 1970


The Sacramento Bee

1970 Year In Review - Police

1 January 1971


The Sacramento Bee

Year Ends, But Hunt For Killers Of 3 Capital Women Goes On

1 January 1971


The Sacramento Bee

Probe Links Rio Linda, El Dorado Slaying Cases

22 June 1971


The Sacramento Bee

Deputies Say Woman Left With Man Prior To Death

23 June 1971


The Sacramento Bee

Police Seek Identity Of Dead Girl

2 August 1971


The Sacramento Bee

Dead Girl's Identity Sought

3 August 1971


The Sacramento Bee

Police Seek Identity Of Dead Girl

3 August 1971


The Sacramento Bee

6th Unsolved Slaying; Woman Is Beaten To Death

31 October 1971


The Sacramento Bee

Bee Starts $100,000 Witness Fund

19 November 1971


The Sacramento Bee

City, County Have 5 Unsolved '74 Deaths

24 December 1974


The Sacramento Bee

Did 'Witchcraft Killer' Slay Three Women In Sacramento Vicinity?

25 April 1975


The Sacramento Bee

Profile of Witchcraft Killer: 'Religious' But DeaDly Savior

26 April 1975


The Sacramento Bee

Witchcraft Killer Linked With Two More Murders

29 April 1975


The Sacramento Bee

DNA find may tie 2 cases

1 January 2003