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Rally & Vigil To Mark 1-Year Anniversary Of Akai Gurley's Death

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A rally and vigil will be held Friday on the one-year anniversary of the police shooting death of an unarmed man in a Brooklyn stairwell.

Several figures from the Black Lives Matter movement are expected to attend the rally for Akai Gurley, including the daughter of Eric Garner, who died in a police chokehold on Staten Island, WCBS 880's Marla Diamond reported.

Gurley's family members are also meeting with the district attorney to push for the thorough prosecution of Officer Peter Liang, who was indicted for manslaughter and other charges. Liang has pleaded not guilty.

On Nov. 20, 2014, investigators said Liang and his partner were going into a stairwell from the eighth floor of the Pink Houses public housing complex in East New York while Gurley and a friend were going down the stairs from the seventh floor.

Police sources told CBS2 that Liang was trying to open a door while holding a gun, and the gun went off accidentally, hitting Gurley in the torso. Gurley was taken to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

The Medical Examiner classified Gurley's death as a homicide shortly after the incident, but said the ruling "does not imply any statement about intent or culpability."

Liang's attorney claims the shooting was an accident.

But prosecutors say Liang shouldn't have had his finger on the trigger of his gun. They also say Liang didn't call an ambulance after Gurley was shot.

Liang was placed on modified desk duty after the shooting.

In May, a wrongful death lawsuit was filed by Gurley's family against the city, naming Liang, his partner and the city's Housing Authority.

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