Mike Folmer, former senator, waives hearing in child pornography case

Lebanon

LEBANON, Pa. (WHTM) – Former state senator Mike Folmer has waived his preliminary hearing on child pornography charges.

Folmer, 63, on waived all charges to Lebanon County Court, according to court records. By waiving the hearing, he does not admit guilt but concedes there is sufficient evidence for trial.

The four-term Republican senator was arrested last month and resigned the next day. He is charged with three counts of child pornography and criminal use of a communication facility, all felonies.

His arrest on Sept. 17 followed a search of his Lebanon home.

Authorities said a six-month investigation began March 4, when the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children received a tip from the microblogging and social networking website Tumblr.

Tumblr reported at least one image containing suspected child pornography was uploaded on Dec. 28, 2017, by a user with the screen name hoser44. Tumblr additionally provided investigators with the user’s email and internet protocol addresses, which eventually were linked to Folmer, according to the criminal complaint.

The image, according to the complaint, depicts “a very young female child” engaged in a sexual act.

Folmer was contacted at his Lebanon office at the time of the search and agreed to return home and turn over his phone. He was advised of his Miranda Rights and stated he was willing to speak to the agents without the presence of an attorney.

During an interview, he admitted that the Tumblr account associated with the tip was his. He told investigators that he “had been dealing with some personal problems/issues and that he had received child pornography through his Tumblr blog,” the complaint states.

Two images of apparent child pornography were found during a computer forensic search of his phone. The two images discovered depicted indecent contact with a minor, the complaint states.

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