Details of Disappearance Phillips was last seen in Fort Myers, Florida on April 22, 1976. She was on the way to the First Federal Savings and Loan Office downtown with her live-in boyfriend, Willie Lee Battles. She planned to withdraw money from her account to pay for a new car.
Battles said he fell asleep after they arrived at the bank and when he woke up, Phillips was gone and the business had closed. She has never been heard from again. None of the bank employees saw her go inside, and there was no activity on her bank account that day.
Foul play is suspected in Phillips's case, as she left behind four children and it's uncharacteristic of her to leave without warning. She's described as a hard-working individual who cleaned houses in order to support her family.
Authorities questioned Battles several times in the decades after her disappearance. He stated he dropped Phillips off at the bank that day and never saw her again, but other witnesses reported seeing the couple driving north on U.S. 41. Investigators believe Battles murdered her, but there is insufficient evidence to charge him in her case.
Phillips has four children. Her case remains unsolved. Some agencies give the year of her disappearance as 1986.
- Lee County Sheriff's Office
Updated 5 times since October 12, 2004. Last updated July 6, 2019; details of disappearance updated.