BROOKLYN - The police officer charged in the fatal November shooting of an unarmed Brooklyn father returned to court Thursday.

Peter Liang is the rookie officer accused of killing 28-year-old Akai Gurley in a dark stairwell in East New York's Pink Houses.

Protesters gathered outside the court to call for increased police accountability while Liang's attorneys asked the judge to dismiss the case.

Police Commissioner Bill Bratton says the shooting appears to be an accident. The city paid for Gurley's funeral.

Gurley's family says that whether or not it was an accident, an innocent life is lost and someone should be held accountable.

Liang is due back in court June 23.