A young man violently assaulted a woman in Dartmouth early Saturday, police said.

Officers were called to Primrose Street around 3 a.m. and found a 53-year-old woman lying on the sidewalk with a serious head injury.  

"A witness to the incident stated they observed a woman lying on the ground and a man kicking her repeatedly," said Lindsay Hernden of Halifax Regional Police. 

The attacker fled before police arrived. The woman is in hospital in a serious but stable condition, police said. 

Police said the suspected attacker is a white man in his 20s, standing five feet eight inches tall, weighing about 185 pounds. He has short brown hair. 

Police asked people with information to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or via the secure website