The white Bay Area Rapid Transit officer charged in the shooting of an unarmed African-American man will get his first hearing in a Los Angeles courtroom Friday morning.

Johannes Mehserle is expected to appear in Los Angeles County Superior Court downtown for a pretrial hearing that will foreshadow the shooting trial, which was moved from Alameda County to Los Angeles in October over concerns that the cop would not get a fair trial in the Bay Area, where he has side of the story hasn't played to well in the media.

The New Year's Day, 2009 shooting of 22-year-old Oscar Grant at an Oakland BART platform was caught on tape and became a YouTube sensation.

The 27-year-old officer's attorney has argued that Mehserle had meant to pull out his Taser and fire a charge at the suspect, who was allegedly resisting arrest, but instead he accidentally shot him with his service handgun.

Mehserle, charged with murder, has pleaded not guilty.

More from Associated Press.

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