Takako Tonooka's life at high school did not start out the way she had anticipated. On the very first day she attended class, she was groped on the train — and that was only the beginning of her nightmare. For a year and a half, she was the victim of persistent groping attacks during her commute to and from school.

On almost every train journey, Tonooka, who agreed to the interview on the condition of anonymity in order to protect her privacy, encountered a groper on the train, usually on her way home from school because she would ride the all-women carriages that operate during the morning rush hour. The gropers were different on each occasion and would include passengers who looked like they were still in their teens to salarymen and even elderly men.

Too shocked to utter a sound during the attacks, Tonooka's cries for help remained unheard for a long time.