Perturbations of the two dimensional carbon lattice of graphene, such as grain boundaries, have significant influence on the charge transport and mechanical properties of this material. Scanning tunneling microscopy measurements presented here show that localized states near the Dirac point dominate the local density of states of grain boundaries in graphene grown by chemical vapor deposition. Such low energy states are not reproduced by theoretical models which treat the grain boundaries as periodic dislocation-cores composed of pentagonal-heptagonal carbon rings. Using ab initio calculations, we have extended this model to include disorder, by introducing vacancies into a grain boundary consisting of periodic dislocation-cores. Within the framework of this model we were able to reproduce the measured density of states features. We present evidence that grain boundaries in graphene grown on copper incorporate a significant amount of disorder in the form of two-coordinated carbon atoms.