Basketball star’s attacker convicted of attempted murder

In light of his attacker’s trial, Andre Murillo reflects on the past five years since he was stabbed.


Olivia Blinn/THE CHIMES

Katie Nelson, Writer

Andre Murillo, a 23-year-old forward on Biola's basketball team, finally saw justice served after being stabbed by Abdullah Wahidi nearly five years ago. “I’ve been forgiven so much … and so this trial has been such a tool of growth for me and such a vehicle to bring me closer to know what Christ has done for me,” Murillo said. | Olivia Blinn/THE CHIMES [file photo]


Nearly five years after he was stabbed at a party in Irvine, 23-year-old Andre Murillo had his day in court. Murillo, a forward for Biola’s men’s basketball team, testified against his attacker, Abdullah Wahidi, 25, in a Santa Ana courtroom beginning Oct. 10. Wahidi was convicted of premeditated and deliberate attempted murder and is expected to be sentenced on Jan. 3.

Looking back on the trial, Murillo described it as difficult and multi-faceted.

“I didn’t realize that it was going to be so emotional and bring back so much, and then there’s also an aspect of relief, obviously,” he said. “At times it was frustrating and … very distracting. It was hard for me to be focused in school and all kinds of things.”


Throughout the process of the trial, there were days when the entire Biola men’s basketball team filled the courtroom to show their support for Murillo, he said. Many of them were present even when Murillo could not be.

Sophomore communications major Caelan Tiongson, another forward, sat through the trial for four days. It was the first time he had been in court for a major case.

“At the beginning of the school year, [Murillo] was kind of the first person to reach out to me and we became pretty close pretty fast,” Tiongson said. “He actually opened up to me about the story of his stabbing early on in our friendship, so when the opportunity came up for me to go and support him, [I went].”

Murillo expressed his relief at the trial finally coming to an end, but added that he was also saddened at what he described as the brokenness that exists in the world.

“There’s nothing beautiful about someone being probably sentenced to life. There’s nothing beautiful about someone being found guilty of premeditated and attempted murder. It’s sad for a lot of people involved. He has a little one-and-a-half-year-old child … and he has a fiancée who has now lost her future husband. … It’s been hard and it’s been sad because someone died in a lot of ways, not physically, but in his life, there’s a lot of things that have died,” he said.


Murillo said he does not feel bitterness toward Wahidi, but instead sees the incident as an act of God.

“I’m not angry with him anymore. I’ve been really given a glimpse of my sinfulness … before a holy God, and his grace in light of that,” he said. “What anyone meant for evil, God meant for my good in that process. So I’ve seen his sovereignty and been overwhelmed with his grace, and both of these things have left me at a place where I’m thankfully not angry with Wahidi in the big scheme of things.”

Now that a conviction has been laid down, Murillo is focusing on his future both in the short term and in the long run. He is considering doing ministry work in Germany, where he lived for the first 12 years of his life.

“My life has moved on, and the fact that the trial’s here and just happened actually doesn’t reflect where I’m at. … Right now, I’m pursuing ministry and I am pursuing basketball and I’m going to graduate,” he said. “Ultimately, I’m pursuing Christ and his kingdom.”

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