Suspect Pleads Not Guilty in Hollywood Strangulation Death of Pen Pal, 82

A 44-year-old man previously convicted of manslaughter pleaded not guilty Monday in the strangulation death of a former Hollywood High School teacher, who had been his pen pal, according to a prosecutor.

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Former Hollywood High school teacher Harry Major was found dead Feb. 12.

Scott Kratlian, also known as Scott Porter, was charged with murder after Harry Major, 82, was found dead in his Hollywood home on Feb. 12.

Major died of strangulation, according to a coroner’s report. The death was ruled a homicide.

Kratlian was taken into custody on Feb. 18 by a Los Angeles Police Department and FBI task force.

Kratlian and Major became pen pals while the suspect was serving a sentence for manslaughter in a New York prison, said Deputy District Attorney Tony Cho of the Elder Abuse Section in a new release on plea.

He was convicted in 1993 in New York for first-degree murder, according to a criminal complaint provided by the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Kratlian was released in late 2013 and then came to Los Angeles, Cho said.

KTLA’s Anthony Kurzweil and Melissa Pamer contributed to this article.