The Providence Journal reports that Newport police say Salve Regina University student Nicholas Coyle faces a felony charge of malicious injury to an animal. He was released on a promise to appear for his arraignment.
His lawyer, Susan Perkins, says he signed a waiver that would allow extradition from another state if he does not appear. She would not comment further.
The 19-year-old Coyle is from Merrick, on New York's Long Island. He has been on the school's men's lacrosse team, but is not listed on the preliminary 2012 roster.
University spokesman Matt Boxler praised students who offered information helping police.