Starter or Ignition or ATS problem?

My son’s 1997 pontiac Grand Am coupe is having an issue with starting. The battery turns over but the car will not remain running. The first time, the repair shop told us they “reprogrammed the anti theft system” and charged us $187. The second time, they said perhaps the starter motor needed replacing, but were unsure whether that would truly fix the problem. Through networking with other mechanics, they came up with the idea to put the key in the ignition, and leave it in the “run” position for about 15 seconds before trying to turn the car on. Then, they said, if this doesn’t work, leave the key in the “run” position and walk away for about 20 minutes and it should fire right up. Is this really what my son has to contend with? We aren’t willing to spend lots of money on this car; any ideas?

I can see how a bad ignition switch or ATS system would cause the engine to quit but not the starter motor. It would be hard for me to believe that the shop would suggest the starter may be causing the engine to die after it has been started. Now if the starter isn’t working when you turn the key to the START position then I can see that there may be a problem with the starter.

In order to fix this a shop is going to have to determine what is really causing the engine not to start up. This may take at least a couple hours of shop time to find the trouble area. If you decide to let someone try to fix this you may want to give them a restriction on labor time and parts you are willing to spend on this. The trouble may just be due to a bad connection somewhere but tracking it down could take some time to find it.

[b] The battery turns  [/b] That's your problem.  Batteries are not suppose to turn over or even move.  

Sorry I could not help myself.