A love of soap operas may have led a convicted murderer to kill again. Three months following his release from a New York prison where he'd served 20 years for murder, Scott Kratlian allegedly strangled to death 82-year-old Harry Major, a pen pal Kratlian had made while in jail. The two had reportedly bonded over their mutual love of ABC's General Hospital.
Kratlian was convicted of a 1992 murder in which he used a belt to kill his victim. Kratlian bound the male victim, beat him, and burned him. While in jail, Kratlian had a "horrendous" disciplinary record. Ultimately after several years of delay because of his behavior, Kratlian was released under New York's conditional release program, a program that does not require approval from a parole board.
According to the Los Angeles Times, shortly after being released from Marcy Correctional Facility near Syracuse, New York, Kratlian headed west to the Los Angeles area to connect with some of his former prison pen pals. Armed with a book containing the addresses of those he'd corresponded with and looking for a place to stay, Kratlian eventually landed at Major's Hollywood apartment on February 10 and allegedly strangled him to death. When Major failed to show up for brunch the next day, friends alerted the police. Major's body was discovered on February 12.
Major's friends, according the Times, knew of Kratlian and Major's friendship and the two had reportedly been spotted together before Major's death.
According to police records, Kratlian was arrested on February 18 by an LAPD and FBI fugitive task force at a Pasadena mental health and substance abuse treatment center. He has pleaded not guilty to murder and is being held without bail. If convicted, Kratlian faces up to 56 years to life in prison.