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Ex-football players sue woman, Sacred Heart University over fake rape claim

Nikki Yovino, Sacred Heart University student accused of filing false rape charges.

BRIDGEPORT — Two former Sacred Heart University football players have filed a lawsuit against the school and a woman who made false rape claims against them in 2016.

Connecticut court records show Dhameer Bradley and Malik St. Hilaire on Oct. 10 sued Nikki Yovino, of South Setauket, New York, on allegations including slander and infliction of emotional distress. They also accuse the school in Fairfield of wrongly suspending them.

Yovino was sentenced in August to a year in prison after pleading guilty to falsely reporting an incident and interfering with police.

Bradley and St. Hilaire said they and Yovino had consensual sex at an off-campus party. Police say Yovino lied so she wouldn’t lose a potential boyfriend.

A lawyer for the university declined to comment Monday. Yovino’s lawyer didn’t immediately return a message.

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