Miami Dade College music professor Marc Magellan was heading into a Kendall campus parking garage last week when someone yelled out, "Professor Marc!"
Next thing Magellan knew, he'd been punched in the face, knocked to the concrete, and brutally beaten until his nose shattered and his hand broke. The music teacher is still baffled by the beatdown and tells the Miami Herald that a student disgruntled over his grades might be the only logical explanation.
"I'm a very peaceful and loving person," Magellan tells the daily. "In my business, yes, the only people who hold grudges are the ones who I've had to drop or fail. It comes with the territory, I guess."
His mother, who also teaches at MDC, echoed that view, telling the Herald that as difficult as it is to imagine a student beating a teacher so badly over a grade, "we don't know what else we're facing here."
Magellan, who was assaulted just after 6 p.m. last Tuesday, told police he didn't recognize his assailant. After the beating, the man sped off in a blue sports car and didn't try to steal anything from the professor.
MDC spokesman Juan Mendieta tells Riptide that the school is waiting for police to finish their investigation before they can determine how to best respond.
"It's very alarming and disturbing," Mendieta says. "No one recalls an incident like this where someone is just mercilessly attacked and robbery is not the motive. We've had to reassure the campus community that our campuses are safe places. No one recalls that type of incident, including his mother, who has been a professor for three decades."
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The school has added more foot patrols to the area around the garage, Mendieta says, and warned people to be vigilant.
"In the future, with more funding, we could install security cameras in the area," he says.
Magellan, meanwhile, is still recovering from his injuries at home. "I spoke to him a couple days ago, and he's in pretty good spirits," Mendieta says. "He hopes to return soon."