RIOT shields were drawn to protect the public and property when a man on the roof of an Isle of Wight mental health unit hurled tiles, say police.

Isle of Wight police arrested a 41-year-old Newport man for 'multiple offences' following an incident at St Mary's Hospital, Newport, last night (Friday).

Police were called to the incident at 6.17pm.

In a short statement, a police spokesperson said several vehicles were damaged and that officers were "deployed with riot shields" due to roof tiles being thrown at people and vehicles in the car park.

A number of vehicles belonging to NHS staff and two police vehicles were damaged, but no one was injured.

"The suspect was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage, affray and threatening to damage property. He remains in custody at this time," the police spokesperson added.

The Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire Service and the Isle of Wight Ambulance Service, together with officers from the Island police dog section and other officers on duty that evening, were called in to assist at the scene.

The National Police Air Service helicopter from Bournemouth was also scrambled to monitor the situation.

The incident was eventually drawn to a safe conclusion at 9.16pm following the suspect's arrest.

"Due to this being a live investigation, no other details can be provided. It is important not jump to conclusions without all the facts," the police spokesperson added.