On Oct. 27, 2007, Joel Lovelien went out on the town in Grand Forks North Dakota. It was a night of Halloween parties and costume comparisons. It was also a night of drinking. Joel and his girlfriend and friends were hanging out at the Broken Drum Bar when he walked outside to take a phone call. He was found a few minutes later laying in the parking, bloodied and apparently beaten.

Joel was unresponsive and although first responders arrived quickly, Joel did not survive. Due to the Halloween celebrations and vast amount of people arriving and leaving on an alcohol-infested “party bus,” descriptions from witnesses about possible suspects included terms like: The lion, the joker and a hunter.

A young college student who had in fact been dressed as a lion was arrested for the murders. His name was Travis Stay. He was found not guilty in December 2008. In season 8, “Unresolved: The Murder of Joel Lovelien.” once again James Wolner has gained access to case files and evidence. Through sit-down interviews with prosecutors, investigators, witnesses and family members, he pursues the case’s central question: Who killed Joel Lovelien?


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