Charges reduced for Ketchum man in domestic assault case

James Steven Buntain, 58, of Ketchum, was initially arrested on a charge of felony aggravated assault last November for allegedly firing a pistol at his partner during an argument, according to the Blaine County Sheriff’s Office. He was accused of using the gun “with apparent ability” and creating a fear of “imminent” violence in his partner, Blaine County Prosecutor Matthew Fredback stated in his original criminal complaint filed on Nov. 14, 2022.

According to a press release from the sheriff’s office, deputies responded to a possible domestic-violence situation at The Meadows trailer park south of Ketchum shortly after 1 a.m. on Nov. 12. In an interview with police, Buntain allegedly admitted to trying to get his partner to leave a residence by firing one round into the floor from his Smith and Wesson 9-millimeter semiautomatic pistol, according to a probable-cause-for-arrest affidavit filed with the court by Ketchum Police Officer Ted Carsley.