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Art room
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3F Art Room
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The 3rd floor art room at Themis Legal Academy.

Prof. Courte's murder[]

Main article: Turnabout Academy

In 2027, Constance Courte and Aristotle Means were both professors at Themis Legal Academy. Courte taught that the truth was the ultimate goal, and that a victory should only be sought through legitimate means. However, Means taught that "the end justifies the means" and that a victory was important above all else. These two conflicting ideas caused a rift in the student body, with half the students following Courte's philosophy and the other half following Means'.

After a report from the class snitch, Juniper Woods, Courte suspected Means of taking bribes in return for boosting the grades of certain students. This led her to confront Means at length on the school stage. Cornered, Means fatally stabbed the professor. He decided to make the killing look like the script of an upcoming school mock trial, which had been written by Juniper Woods, in order to frame Woods for the crime. To this end, he grabbed a Gavinners banner that had sopped up most of the victim's blood and sent it up to the art room using a wire. He wiped a large amount of the blood on the floor of the art room, then wiped up the fake "bloodstain" so that luminol testing would reveal it later. He then disposed of the Gavinners banner using an incinerator. To take care of the body itself, Means fashioned it to look like a statue of Phoenix Wright by tying Courte's hands behind her head and plunging his staff into her side, then wrapping the statue facsimile in cloth. Robin Newman, a senior prosecutor student, had herself asked Means to finish the Wright statue earlier that day so that she could convince her parents to let her be an artist.

The next day, Means completed his plan. He pre-recorded a long speech which he was to give before the mock trial, then played it to give himself an alibi and free rein of the campus. He first removed Courte from her statue state, wiped his staff clean of blood, and plunged an Archery Club arrow into her side, in order to make the killing look even more like the mock trial script (and account for the jagged wound his staff had inflicted). He next went up to the art room and bundled up a Lady Justice statue in a school banner, then sent it whizzing down the wire to break both a finished statue of Klavier Gavin and the unfinished Wright statue, as well as draw attention to the body. He then returned to his faculty seat, cementing his alibi. In order to cover his tracks, he also erased the pre-recorded speech, although very inexpertly, leaving ten minutes and thirty-five seconds of white noise on the tape.

Finally, Means planned to take up the defense of Woods himself in order to completely clear all suspicion surrounding him. However, Athena Cykes had already volunteered for this task. Cykes learned from the testimony of lawyer course student Hugh O'Conner that Means had not been in his seat during the speech, which led her to reconsider the tape and figure out Means' plot. Means gave testimony which alleged that, as he had completed the Wright statue so quickly, he could not have left the stage for a second, thus giving him an alibi. However, Cykes figured out the meaning behind the statue (or lack thereof) and exposed Means. Woods was declared not guilty.