Judge George Eskin announced that he’ll be resigning from the bench after serving 10 years. Eskin sent a note to his colleagues explaining that the recent death of Judge Ed Bullard in North County coupled with the birth of a granddaughter highlighted for him the shortness of time. Eskin, one of the few judges handling a criminal caseload, has not yet submitted his resignation papers and said he’d like to step down in October. Eskin’s resignation and Bullard’s death create two vacancies on the bench. In addition, Judge Frank Ochoa’s tenure remains questionable; Ochoa has been seeking an appointment to the appellate court and is considered — at least according to the courthouse rumor mill — a very strong contender. If appointed, Ochoa would be the first Santa Barbara judge to ever secure an appellate post.