Demonstrators march in New York, Saturday, Dec. 13, 2014, during the Justice for All rally and march. In the past three weeks, grand juries have decided not to indict officers in the chokehold death of Eric Garner in New York and the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo. The decisions have unleashed demonstrations and questions about police conduct and whether local prosecutors are the best choice for investigating police.
John Minchillo—AP
By Denver Nicks
December 22, 2014

The killing of unarmed black men Michael Brown and Eric Garner by police officers was voted the top news story of 2014 in a survey of news directors and editors around the country.

Police killings, and the federal investigations and civil unrest they unleashed, came out on top from among the 85 votes cast with 22 first-place votes, in the Associated Press poll. Voters placed the Ebola outbreak in West Africa as second biggest, and the rise of the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria third biggest story of the year.

The poll was conducted before the U.S. announced it would re-establish diplomatic relations with Cuba.

These, in order, are the top ten stories of the year as determined by the AP poll.

1. Police Killings

2. Ebola Outbreak

3. Islamic State

4. U.S. Elections and the GOP Wave

5. Obamacare Ongoing Rollout

6. Malaysia Airlines Flight 370

7. Obama’s Executive Action on Immigration

8. Conflict in Ukraine

9. Gay Marriage Wave

10. Veterans Affairs Scandal

Contact us at editors@time.com.

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