Elizabeth Drysdale, a single mother from Waterbury, spoke of three recent incidents that caused her to fear for her safety. She said she should be able to choose the size of magazine and type of firearm to defend herself.
"Don't my children and I deserve your support and consideration to be safe,'' she asked lawmakers.
Judy Aron of West Hartford said bills such as those requiring gun owners to have liability insurance and ammunition taxes only harm lawful gun owners.
"Every gun owner did not pull the trigger that was pulled by Adam Lanza, she said.
The state's gun manufacturers, meanwhile, urged the subcommittee to not support legislation that could put the state's historic gun manufacturing industry at risk.
Mark Mattioli, whose 6-year-old son James was killed at Sandy Hook, got a standing ovation when he said there are plenty of gun laws but they're not properly enforced. He urged lawmakers to address the culture of violence.
"It's a simple concept. We need civility across our nation,'' he said. "What we're seeing are symptoms of a bigger problem. This is a symptom. The problem is not gun laws. The problem is a lack of civility.''
Two Southbury natives who survived a mass shooting last year at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., urged lawmakers to address online, private guns sales that don't require background checks. Stephen Barton and Ethan Rodriguez-Torrent also want to require background checks for purchases of so-called long guns and not just handguns.
State Rep. Arthur O'Neill, R-Southbury, who has known Rodriguez-Torrent since he was a child, predicted state lawmakers will reach a compromise on guns.
He said lawmakers' minds have changed since the Dec. 14 school massacre.
"Dec. 13 was one way of looking at the world, and Dec. 15 is a different way of looking at the world,'' he said.