Breaking the Glass Ceiling is a case featured in Criminal Case as the thirteenth case of Mysteries of the Past (Season 4) and the one-hundred eighty-fourth case overall. It is the first case to take place in the Century Mile district of Concordia.


Maddie and the player went to the World Exhibition to relax after Mr Alastor's last party. They heard a glass-breaking sound from the Crystal Palace. They headed there and found architect Norah Barnlow impaled with glass shards.

During the investigation, Mayor Cornelius Castletown got wind of the murder and scolded the team. Later, an angry mob led by laborer Gus Smiffel demanded to demolish the palace. The team gathered enough evidence to arrest Henrietta Vanderbilt for the murder.

Henrietta denied involvement but soon admitted to the crime. Her father had been competing against Norah to be in charge of the Crystal Palace. When Cornelius gave Norah the project, Henrietta's father could not stand the defeat. He then committed suicide. Angered and saddened, Henrietta cut a rope suspending a glass pane over Norah's head, crushing her. Judge Takakura sentenced her to 30 years in jail.

After the trial, Takakura announced his incoming retirement. Justin Lawson wanted to take his place and needed to impress Mayor Castletown. With the player, he offered to talk to Gus and convince him to stop his strike to ensure safety at the Exhibition. Claiming that the palace was unsafe, Gus refused. The duo investigated the palace's interior and found a plan. Per Evie and her brother Nicholas, the plan had been altered, making the structure unstable. Nicholas then volunteered to help Gus and his men to safely finish the palace, thus ending the strike.

Meanwhile, Charlie stole some bodily fluids samples from Viola to test his DNA machine, angering her. After they made peace, Chief Wright suggested the team to rest, as the Exhibition would open in two days.



  • Norah Barnlow (impaled by glass shards in the Crystal Palace)

Murder Weapon

  • Glass Pane


  • Henrietta Vanderbilt



Killer's Profile

  • The killer is right handed.
  • The killer wears work boots.
  • The killer has a fear of heights.
  • The killer uses a pencil.
  • The killer wears a felt hat.

Crime Scenes


Chapter 1


  • Investigate Crystal Palace Interior. (Clues: Wheelbarrow, Rope Spool, Victim's Body; Murder Weapon registered: Glass Pane; Victim identified: Norah Barnlow)
  • Examine Wheelbarrow. (Result: Hard Hat; New Suspect: Gus Smiffel)
  • Question Gus Smiffel about his relationship with the victim. (Prerequisite: Hard Hat found; New Crime Scene Unlocked: Ferris Wheel)
  • Investigate Ferris Wheel. (Prerequisite: Gus interrogated; Clues: Lunchbox, Faded Newspaper)
  • Examine Lunchbox. (Result: Broken Badge)
  • Examine Broken Badge. (Result: Security Badge; New Suspect: Eleanor Halsted)
  • Inform Eleanor Halsted of the murder. (Prerequisite: Security Badge unraveled)
  • Examine Faded Newspaper. (Result: Newspaper Article; New Suspect: Katherine Woolf)
  • Question Katherine Woolf about her article on the victim. (Prerequisite: Newspaper Article unraveled)
  • Examine Rope Spool. (Result: Black Substance)
  • Analyze Black Substance. (09:00:00; Attribute: The killer wears work boots)
  • Autopsy Victim's Body. (18:00:00; Attribute: The killer is right handed)
  • Go to Chapter 2. (No stars)

Chapter 2


  • Investigate Canteen. (Available after unlocking Chapter 2; Clues: Crystal Palace Model, Broken Frame, Victim's Planner)
  • Examine Crystal Palace Model. (Result: Fingerprints)
  • Examine Fingerprints. (New Suspect: Henrietta Vanderbilt)
  • Ask Henrietta Vanderbilt whether she worked with the victim. (Prerequisite: Henrietta Vanderbilt's Fingerprints identified; Profile updated: Henrietta wears work boots; New Crime Scene Unlocked: Park Bench)
  • Investigate Park Bench. (Prerequisite: Henrietta interrogated; Clues: Umbrella, Jewelry Box [Bracelet])
  • Examine Umbrella. (Result: Pink Substance)
  • Examine Pink Substance. (Result: Lipstick)
  • Question Eleanor Halsted about her concealed blade. (Prerequisite: Lipstick identified under microscope; Profile updated: Eleanor wears work boots)
  • Examine Bracelet. (Result: Serial Number)
  • Analyze Serial Number. (12:00:00)
  • Ask Katherine Woolf about her intentions towards the victim. (Prerequisite: Serial Number analyzed)
  • Examine Broken Frame. (Result: Framed Picture; New Suspect: Cornelius Castletown)
  • Ask Mayor Castletown about his relationship with the victim. (Prerequisite: Framed Picture unraveled; Profile updated: Cornelius is right handed and wears work boots)
  • Examine Victim's Planner. (Result: Killer's Note)
  • Analyze Killer's Note. (12:00:00; Attribute: The killer has a fear of heights)
  • Go to Chapter 3. (1 star)

Chapter 3


  • Ask Gus Smiffel why he wants the Crystal Palace demolished. (Available after unlocking Chapter 3; Profile updated: Gus is right handed, wears work boots and has a fear of heights; New Crime Scene Unlocked: Tables)
  • Investigate Tables. (Prerequisite: Gus interrogated; Clues: Trash Can, Torn Sketch)
  • Examine Trash Can. (Result: Paper Thread)
  • Analyze Paper Thread. (09:00:00)
  • Confront Mayor Castletown about his telegram to the victim. (Prerequisite: Paper Thread analyzed; Profile updated: Cornelius has a fear of heights)
  • Examine Torn Sketch. (Result: Architectural Sketch)
  • Examine Architectural Sketch. (Result: Architectural Assignment)
  • Question Henrietta Vanderbilt about her bad grade. (Prerequisite: Architectural Assignment unraveled; Profile updated: Henrietta is right handed and has a fear of heights)
  • Investigate Construction Site. (All tasks before must be done first; Clues: Spool Cover, Pocketknife)
  • Examine Spool Cover. (Result: Flakes)
  • Analyze Flakes. (09:00:00; Attribute: The killer uses a pencil)
  • Examine Pocketknife. (Result: Fluff)
  • Analyze Fluff. (15:00:00; Attribute: The killer wears a felt hat)
  • Take care of the killer now!
  • Go to The Gears of Change (1/6). (No stars)

The Gears of Change (1/6)


  • Talk to Gus Smiffel about the strike. (Available after unlocking The Gears of Change)
  • Investigate Crystal Palace Interior. (Prerequisite: Gus interrogated; Clue: Cylindrical Case)
  • Examine Cylindrical Case. (Result: Scrolled Plan [Blueprint])
  • Analyze Blueprint. (06:00:00)
  • Persuade Gus Smiffel that construction should restart. (Prerequisite: Blueprint analyzed; Reward: Crazy Inventor)
  • Talk to Viola. (Available after unlocking The Gears of Change; Reward: 20,000 Coins)
  • Investigate Ferris Wheel. (Prerequisite: Viola interrogated; Clue: Viola's Case)
  • Examine Viola's Case. (Result: Open Case)
  • Analyze Open Case. (09:00:00)
  • Question Charlie about the theft. (Prerequisite: Open Case analyzed; Reward: Burger)
  • Move on to a new crime! (1 star)


  • The case title comes from the phrase "break the glass ceiling", meaning to overcome an invisible barrier preventing a certain demographic group (most commonly women) from rising to a certain position.
  • The case was released on a Wednesday instead of the usual Thursday.
  • In Chapter 1, two of William Shakespeare's plays, Twelfth Night and A Midsummer Night's Dream, are mentioned.


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