Model Observers are widely used in medical imaging for the optimization and evaluation of instrumentation, acquisition parameters and image reconstruction and processing methods. The channelized Hotelling observer (CHO) is a commonly used model observer in nuclear medicine and has seen increasing use in other modalities. An anthropmorphic CHO consists of a set of channels that model some aspects of the human visual system and the Hotelling Observer, which is the optimal linear discriminant. The optimality of the CHO is based on the assumption that the channel outputs for data with and without the signal present have a multivariate normal distribution with equal class covariance matrices. The channel outputs result from the dot product of channel templates with input images and are thus the sum of a large number of random variables. The central limit theorem is thus often used to justify the assumption that the channel outputs are normally distributed. In this work, we aim to examine this assumption for realistically simulated nuclear medicine images when various types of signal variability are present.