A POLICE officer invited a victim of domestic abuse out for cocktails, texted her kisses and tried to “emotionally manipulate” her, a tribunal has heard.

The Hampshire Police constable harboured a “romantic interest” in the vulnerable woman and offered to take her out for drinks and cheer her up, it is claimed.

After meeting the woman through work, the serving policeman allegedly sent her streams of messages and engaged in “coercive and controlling behaviour”.

The middle-aged man, whom a police tribunal has thus far refused to name publicly, could be sacked for gross misconduct if the string of allegations are proven.

He appeared before the panel at Hampshire Police HQ in Eastleigh on Monday after denying the offences which date back to late 2019.

Speaking in a pre-recorded interview played at the hearing, the woman described the officer “constantly messaging” her to make sure she was all right.

She added: “I remember him pointing out there’s a bar or a restaurant… and he said in text when this is all over I will take you out for cocktails and cheer you up

“When you invite someone out for dinner and cocktails that’s a date, that’s not a normal police thing to do… that’s a date invitation.”

She said she believed he had a “romantic interest” in her.

The woman described being “naive” and added “I should have seen the flirtiness of it”.

Victoria von Wachter, bringing the allegations, argued that the officer tried to “ingratiate himself with Female A and at the very least to control her and to manipulate her actions”.

She added: “The reality is that Officer A treated Female A in a way that he would not treat a male in terms of coercive and controlling behaviour and in the way in which he addressed her.

“That in itself sexualises the relationship,” she added, saying the officer had a “sexual motivation”.

The panel heard evidence that the officer had sent the woman 51 messages in a single day, and that texts would often include kisses and at least once the officer called her “hun”.

Ms von Wachter added: “It is calling outside normal working hours and engaging in the sort of communication that is more common between friends not a professional police officer and his professional client.

“This professional client is a vulnerable individual, a victim of domestic abuse, highly suggestable and therefore to be treated with particular care.”

The misconduct hearing is expected to last several more days and include a decision from the panel on whether to lift the ban on identifying the officer.