Ex-employee charged with stealing nearly $100,000 from OrthoGeorgia

A former employee at a midstate orthopedic clinic has been charged with stealing nearly $100,000 from the clinic over a span that dates back to spring 2012.

An official at OrthoGeorgia’s office on Northside Drive in Macon reported the alleged theft there in March.

The former employee, Melissa D. Zediker, 44, of Macon, was arrested and jailed Friday on 41 counts of theft. She was released on $20,000 bond the same day.

A LinkedIn account that bears Zediker’s name and picture lists her as an administrator at OrthoGeorgia, though her booking file at the Bibb County jail says she now works at another local doctor’s office.

According to details in an arrest warrant and a sheriff’s report, Zediker, “through fraudulent means,” deposited a total of $99,063 in OrthoGeorgia payroll proceeds in her mother’s name to a bank account.

Authorities said her mother had worked for the clinic briefly in the past.

The alleged theft first caught the eye of OrthoGeorgia’s chief financial officer who, according to a sheriff’s report, noticed “various suspicious activities” with the mother’s payroll account.

Zediker’s lawyer, Holly Hogue Edwards, said Tuesday that the facts of the case “don’t amount to criminal conduct.”

“There’s a lot more to it,” Edwards said, adding that investigators could have asked to speak to Zediker for an explanation before they arrested her.

“The actual story when you scratch beneath the surface,” Edwards said, “there’s nothing criminal about it.”

To contact writer Joe Kovac Jr., call 744-4397 or find him on Twitter@joekovacjr.