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Defendant in murder, sex assault case collapses in DuPage court

Updated: April 23, 2013 1:05PM

Woodridge murder suspect Adam Belmont suddenly collapsed during a court hearing Friday, but it wasn’t because a DuPage County judge had just denied his request for bail.

The 23-year-old Belmont, who’s charged with fatally stabbing and sexually assaulting his former girlfriend, told his attorney he felt “dizzy” — possibly because of a lack of sleep.

“He just said he felt dizzy,” attorney Vincent Miceli said after the Friday hearing. “He’s not sleeping.”

Belmont fell to the courtroom floor shortly after Judge Blanche Fawell rejected his request to set his bail at $1 million for the Dec. 15 slaying of 25-year-old Alyssa Van Meter.

During a Monday court appearance, the Northlake man initially was ordered held without bail.

Despite his abrupt fall on Friday, Belmont didn’t lose consciousness, Miceli said.

After being aided by sheriff’s deputies, Belmont returned briefly in a wheelchair to complete the hearing.

Belmont is charged with breaking into Van Meter’s Woodridge apartment, then fatally stabbing her after she refused to reconcile with him following a recent breakup, DuPage County authorities said. Following her death, Belmont allegedly sexually assaulted her, authorities contend.

Friends and co-workers are still trying to cope with her death.

“It hurts us bad,” said Bill Gratzianna, owner of O’Hare Towing Service, where Van Meter was one of the few women tow truck drivers.

Van Meter met Belmont and began dating him while he worked for the tow service, though he had left for another job nearly a year ago,

Though she stood barely five feet tall, Van Meter was a good driver who never flinched from the hard work the job sometimes demanded, Gratzianna recalled.

“She’d get a sense of accomplishment when she’d jump out and help a big guy change a tire or pull him out of a ditch,” he said.

On Saturday, her co-workers will salute her a final time after her 10 a.m. funeral service in Downers Grove.

They plan to escort her casket with a procession of as many as 200 tow trucks from the Downers Grove funeral home to a crematorium in Lombard, Gratzianna said.

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