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I think your machine has 2 problems.
  • a brake latch that is not working to hold pedal down
  • a seat switch that is not working (perhaps disconnected?)

If the latch doesn't keep the brake pedal from lifting when you remove your foot -- you're going to have to find out why it's not latching -- if you want to be able to let it run when you are off the seat.

The latch for the brake on my LX176 is working.
With parking brake down (and held by latch) the engine will stay running when off the seat.
With the pedal up, the engine will shutdown if operator is off the seat.

Also, if the brake is depressed and latched in place it is not necessary to sit on the seat (or hold it down...) for the engine to crank/start/idle.

Since your engine dies as soon as the pedal raises -- the seat switch (or wiring/circuit) is not working.
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