HYTA. It sounds like it could be one of those silicon-based life forms from the original Star Trek science fiction TV series, but it isn't. It's very real and it's something that could be very useful for a young person who may be facing a wide range of criminal offenses to know about.
HYTA stands for the Holmes Youthful Trainee Act. As we explained in an article about how police specialty drug teams target college students, it was enacted some years ago as a means by which the courts could take into account that there are times when young people make errors in judgment that result in criminal charges. The law recognizes that young lives could be detrimentally affected by a criminal conviction, so it provides certain defendants in certain situations to avoid the consequences of having a permanent criminal record.