HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – Voters in a central Pennsylvania state Senate district will get a chance in January to pick a replacement for a four-term senator who resigned last week after being arrested on child pornography possession charges.

Lt. Gov. John Fetterman said in a Wednesday statement that Jan. 14 is the earliest possible date to restore representation to residents of the heavily Republican district, which is based in Lebanon County.

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A preliminary hearing on the charges against Republican Mike Folmer is scheduled for Thursday. Folmer hasn’t commented.

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Investigators allegedly found two images of child pornography on Folmer’s cell phone after they asked him to turn it over at his house in Lebanon County. Authorities were acting on a tip from a social media website.

Folmer’s resignation left the 50-seat Senate with a 27-22 Republican majority.

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