A 'flirtatious' GMP officer was sacked after he sent WhatsApps to a vulnerable woman he met at work.

Robert Whitehead sent WhatsApps after setting up a care plan for the vulnerable woman, referred to as Miss A, after she was reported missing last year.

PC Whitehead started on a police phone, but switched to a personal phone, asking Miss A to remove all of the messages and the photos between them.

Instead she reported the messages and the photos and he was suspended pending an investigation by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

At a tribunal this week Julian King, representing PC Whitehead, said he was not attempting a romantic relationship or a sexual relationship with Miss A.

Chief Constable Stephen Watson, however, said his actions amounted to misconduct and he was sacked.

READ MORE: GMP officer who punched puppy among misconduct cases.

At the tribunal this week the chief constable said: "While much of the messaging could amount to an officer checking on a vulnerable woman's safety and wellbeing there were messages which were inappropriate and of a sexual nature. 

"Mr Whitehead knew his actions were inappropriate having chosen to swap to his personal number. He should have known it was inappropriate and an abuse of power and it falls far below behaviours and standards the public expects."

PC Whitehead was placed on the College of Policing's barred list, where he remains unless he succeeds in a review application.

He cannot start a review application for a minimum of five years. 

This article was written by Jack Tooth. To contact him, email jack.tooth@newsquest.co.uk or follow @JTRTooth on Twitter.