SANTA MARIA, Calif. -

A popular Santa Barbara County Superior Court judge has passed away.  Court officials say Judge Edward Bullard died Sunday afternoon, following complications from heart surgery.

Court officials said Bullard was released from the hospital on Friday, and seemed to be doing well.

But he passed away in his sleep Sunday afternoon.

Bullard presided over his Santa Maria courtroom since 2006.

Before that he spent 17 years as a Senior Deputy District Attorney, and 11 years as a CHP officer.