A special Grand Jury convened on the ninth of June and over the next 12 days heard testimony from witnesses. The Grand Jury was all white, as disenfranchised blacks could not sit on juries. The result of the testimony was a decision by the Grand Jury that the riot was caused by the blacks who had come to the courthouse. The responsibility for the riot and the resulting loss of life and damages was thus placed on the black community. The grand jury also faulted the Tulsa police for not preventing the riot.
According to the Grand Jury’s official report, issued on June 25, “We find that the recent race riot was the direct result of an effort on the part of a certain group of colored men who appeared at the court house on the night of May 31, 1921…” The statement went on to say, “The assembly was quiet until the arrival of armed Negroes, which precipitated and was the direct cause of the entire affair.” The Grand Jury handed down 85 indictments for actions occurring during the riots. Prosecutors brought charges in 27 different cases but in the end nobody was convicted of any crimes involving the riots or the events which led up to them.
The charges against Dick Rowland, who spent the period of the riot in the secure jail within the County Court House, were dismissed in September. Sarah Page declined to press charges and prosecutors dropped the case. Speculation over what happened led some to believe that Rowland tripped and reaching out to support himself accidentally grabbed her, causing her to let out a startled scream. Others speculated that Rowland and Page knew each other, and that they were in fact lovers, but there is no evidence of that beyond salacious gossip. Rowland left Tulsa following his release and exoneration.
No further investigation or action by the City of Tulsa or the State of Oklahoma took place for decades, other than attempting extradition of former leaders of the Greenwood community to try them for inciting the riot. In 1996 Oklahoma established a special commission to investigate the riot and make recommendations to the legislature as necessary. The commission worked for several years before delivering a report which included several recommended actions, including the payment of reparations to survivors of the riot or their descendants, as well as the establishment of the scholarship funds for the descendants of riot victims.
Oklahoma’s Legislature passed an act which provided for some, but not all, of the commission’s recommendations in 2001. Reparations were not included. Other legal actions have been initiated by some descendants of survivors. For many of the survivors of the riot there was neither legal recourse nor an opportunity to rebuild. They simply left Tulsa, never to return. As of 2018, no reparations have been paid, and the Oklahoma Supreme Court has ruled that the Statute of Limitations for cases based on the riot has long since expired.