SKOWHEGAN — A Skowhegan man whom Waterville police arrested Feb. 20 on child pornography charges has enrolled in a court-ordered tracking program in Somerset County.

Neal G. Teixeira, 30, of MRI Drive, was moved from the Kennebec County jail in Augusta and booked at the Somerset County Jail in East Madison on Wednesday. He now must comply with the Somerset County Community Corrections Program.

District Attorney Maeghan Maloney said the judge gave Teixeira a choice: He could pay $500 cash bail and sign a Maine pre-trial contract for supervision while he is out, or bail would be set at $5,000 cash.

He chose the $500 bail and the Maine pre-trial option and because he lives in Skowhegan, his supervision was transferred to Somerset County, where the county-run Triple C program replaced contracted pre-trial services about two years ago. The program is run from the county jail under the direction of Sgt. Teresa Brown of the sheriff’s department.

Maloney said Sheriff Barry DeLong started the Somerset County program a few years ago while Evert Fowle was district attorney. Fowle is now a district court judge. Maloney took over as DA for Kennebec and Somerset counties in January 2013.

“The Triple C program does an excellent job with supervising people in the community,” Maloney said. “It cuts down on the expense of housing someone in jail, while keeping the community safe because people have to check in several times a week.”

Dale Lancaster, deputy chief at the Somerset County Sheriff’s Department, said the program is part of Teixeira’s bail and is aimed at keeping a close watch on criminals who are nonviolent offenders and who might want to work at their jobs while awaiting trial. It is not for people charged with robbery, domestic violence or other serious violent crimes, he said.

Lancaster called it a bail enhancement program.

“It’s almost like pre-trial services, but better,” he said. “You have to report to the Triple C officer — Sgt. Brown — call in every day, and you have to be drug-tested twice weekly. He’ll not only have to check in, but we’ll have the ability to search his home or person to make sure he does not have material he isn’t legally supposed to have.”

Lancaster said there now are 38 participants in the program, which averages 45 people at any given time. He said there have been as many as 60 people enrolled at one time since the program began.

Now Teixeira is charged with one count of possession of sexually explicit material of a minor under 12, based on images of children on computer CDs that Waterville police said they found while executing search warrants last month. The charge is a class C felony punishable by up to five years in prison and up to a $5,000 fine.

Teixeira could face more charges as the investigation continues, according to Maloney.

Waterville police said last month that they don’t know whether the images seized by authorities involve local children, but it hasn’t been ruled out.

Teixeira’s arrest resulted from a monthlong criminal investigation by Waterville police that was unrelated to child pornography, police said at the time. The investigation prompted police to get two search warrants — one for a storage unit at 306 Neck Road in Benton, where they found computer CDs containing child pornography images; and the other at Teixeira’s home in Skowhegan with help from Skowhegan police.

He is scheduled to appear April 15 in Kennebec County Superior Court in Augusta.

Doug Harlow — 612-2367dharlow@centralmaine.comTwitter: @Doug_Harlow