Police announced they are investigating reports of the assault, after a woman reported she was attacked by a man on Saturday evening between 10pm and 11pm. The man approached the woman, who was walking country-bound along the Sydenham Bypass, between Dee Street and Belfast City Airport.
He was driving a dark-coloured car which made off along the bypass in the direction of Holywood. He was described as being aged in his 30s and was wearing a dark-coloured hooded top with the hood up.
“This is a horrific crime that will no doubt send shockwaves through the local community,” said Mr Lyttle.
“My thoughts are with the woman at this time and I hope she will be able to recover from this sickening incident.
“I would urge anyone with any information to contact police immediately.”