For more than a year, Assemblywoman Shirley Weber has been working on a bill meant to curb police shootings by limiting when police can use deadly force. The San Diego Democrat persevered through political setbacks and failed attempts at compromise before landing on a version that now appears likely to become law.

A sharecropper’s daughter who was born in Arkansas, Weber came of age in Los Angeles during the rise of the black power movement in the 1960s. She went on to study history and spent decades as a scholar of African-American social movements that foreshadowed today’s push for greater police accountability. But other lawmakers don’t share her radical background, and Weber needs their support for her bill to pass.

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Laurel Rosenhall

Laurel covers California politics for CalMatters, with a focus on power and personalities in the statehouse. Her stories explain political dynamics in the Capitol and examine how money, advocacy and relationships...