Gabrielle Union and Chris Howard Split

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Gabrielle Union (search) and her husband have separated after four years of marriage.

Union and Chris Howard (search) announced the split in a statement released Monday by Lisa Kussell, the actress' publicist.

"The couple remains close and asks that you respect their privacy at this difficult time," the statement said.

Union, 32, married Howard, a former NFL running back for the Jacksonville Jaguars (search), in 2001.

Her screen credits include roles in "The Honeymooners," "Bad Boys II" and "Deliver Us From Eva." Her upcoming film, "Running With Scissors," also stars Annette Bening, Gwyneth Paltrow (search) and Joseph Fiennes.

Union stars in ABC's "Night Stalker (search)," an "X-files"-like series about investigating crimes connected to the supernatural.